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The Corrosion Times
Local and International News on Corrosion

17-year-old dies after basketball hoop structure in Bedok falls on him
Asiaone, July 27, 2021

A game of basketball with friends ended on a tragic note for a teen on Monday (July 26) night.


The hoop structure at a basketball court near Block 18 Bedok South Road collapsed and fell on him, gravely injuring the 17-year-old.


The Singapore Civil Defence Force told AsiaOne they received a call for assistance at about 8.45pm.


Paramedics performed cardiopulmonary resuscitation on the teen while taking him to Changi General Hospital.


"A 17-year-old male teenager was unconscious when conveyed to the hospital, where he subsequently died from his injuries," the police said. Investigations into the unnatural death are ongoing.


[WebCorr comment: A similar incident occurred in March 2003:

Boy hit on head by lamp post dies, The Straits Times Wednesday, 7 March 2003.

Computer modeling software such as Soil-Compass, used for the modeling and prediction of corrosion of metals and alloys in soil environment, can provide early indication of the metal loss due to corrosion BEFORE catastrophic failure occurs.]


Surfside Condo Collapse: 97 Victims Identified

July 24, Saturday 2021, CNN


Authorities have identified 97 victims including 96 who were recovered from the collapse site and one who died in the hospital, Miami-Dale County officials said Wednesday.

Miami condo collapse: Death toll rises to 5 as rescuers race to find survivors

26 June, Saturday 2021, Channel News Asia

SURFSIDE, Florida: Florida officials continued to hold out hope on Saturday (Jun 26) for survivors of a high-rise apartment building that partially collapsed three years after an engineer had warned of "major structural damage." But fire was complicating the increasingly desperate effort to find 156 people still unaccounted for more than two days after part of the building pancaked into a mountain of debris.

"We're facing incredible difficulties with this fire," Miami-Dade County mayor Daniella Levine Cava told reporters early Saturday. She said workers dug a trench through the debris to control the "very deep" blaze, but that smoke had spread throughout the site. But, she added: "We continue to have hope. We're continuing to search. We're looking for people alive in the rubble, that is our priority and our teams have not stopped."

Five people have been confirmed dead after the 12-story oceanfront building in Surfside, near Miami Beach, collapsed as residents slept inside early Thursday. The fifth body was found on Saturday, a local official said.

With the identification of three previously recovered bodies, "it means that the unaccounted is now gone down to 156, confirmed deaths are now at a total of five," she said. Cava said Saturday that the casualty numbers were unchanged from the day before.

Still, the passage of time with no further survivors being found raised fears of a much higher death toll as rescuers sift through the debris with heavy machinery and sniffer dogs, and as increasingly frustrated families continued their agonising wait.

Authorities and experts have stressed that the causes for Champlain Tower South's collapse are still unknown. But the report of an engineering consultancy that studied the building in 2018, released late Friday by officials, underlined early concerns. It said its inspectors found "major structural damage" to the concrete slab below a ground-level pool deck and "abundant" cracking and crumbling in the parking garage. "Failure to replace the waterproofing in the near future will cause the extent of the concrete deterioration to expand exponentially," warned the report, from the Morabito Consultants firm.

Most of the damage was "probably caused by years of exposure to the corrosive salt air along the South Florida coast," it said. The report did not indicate that the 40-year-old building risked collapse, but said it needed repairs to maintain "structural integrity."

[WebCorr's comment: Computer modeling software Concrete-Compass, used for the modeling and prediction of concrete corrosion, indicated that significant corrosion of reinforcing steels would have already occurred in the building by the early 1990s due to frequent seawater flooding.]


Death Toll Rises to 2 People From Baltimore Gas Explosion

ABC News, 12 August 2020


BALTIMORE -- Two people are now confirmed dead following a natural gas explosion that destroyed three row houses in Baltimore and sent seven people to the hospital, authorities said Tuesday.


More than 200 people in the neighborhood were affected by the blast, and about 30 have utilized temporary shelter since the explosion, she said.

The natural gas explosion leveled three row houses and ripped open a fourth, trapping people in the debris and scattering shards of glass and other rubble over the northwest Baltimore neighborhood of Reisterstown Station. Dozens of firefighters converged on the scene to free the injured.


The Baltimore Sun reported last year that dangerous gas leaks have become much more frequent, with nearly two dozen discovered each day on average, according to the utility's reports to federal authorities. BGE has said it has thousands of miles of obsolete pipes that need to be replaced, an effort that would cost nearly $1 billion and take two decades, the newspaper said.

Founded in 1816, BGE is the oldest gas distribution company in the nation. Like many older gas systems, a larger portion of its gas main and services infrastructure consists of cast iron and bare steel materials that are obsolete and susceptible to failure with age, the PSC wrote in a 2018 order approving a modernization plan.

This area's gas infrastructure was installed in the early 1960s. When aging pipes fail, they tend to make headlines. Last year, a gas explosion ripped the facade off a Maryland office complex in Columbia, affecting more than 20 businesses. No one was injured in the explosion early on a Sunday morning. In 2016, a gas main break forced the evacuation of the Baltimore County Circuit Courthouse. Under Armour Inc. had to evacuate its Baltimore office after a gas main break in 2012.


U.S. FAA Issues Emergency Directive on 2,000 Boeing 737s Parked in Pandemic
Reuters, Thursday, July 24, 2020

WASHINGTON - Safety regulators issued an emergency order directing airlines to inspect and if necessary replace a critical engine part on popular Boeing 737 jets after four reports of engines shutting down during flights. The Federal Aviation Administration said Friday that its order affected about 2,000 twin-engine passenger jets in the United States.

The FAA said operators must inspect any 737 that has been parked for at least seven days or been flown fewer than 11 times since being returned to service. That's because of reports that certain engine valves can become stuck in the open position due to corrosion during storage. "Corrosion of these valves on both engines could result in a dual-engine power loss without the ability to restart. This condition, if not addressed, could result in compressor stalls and dual-engine power loss without the ability to restart, which could result in a forced off-airport landing," the directive indicated.

With thousands of 737s in fleets worldwide, the order could have far-reaching effects on airlines, particularly given how many planes are sitting idle thanks to the coronavirus pandemic.

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Ford Recalls 874,000 F-Series Pickup Trucks Due to Corrosion

The Associated Press, Friday, December 21, 2018

Ford is recalling more than 874,000 F-Series pickup trucks with engine block heaters in the U.S. and Canada because they can catch fire.

The recall covers certain F-150s from the 2015 through 2019 model years, as well as the 2017 through 2019 F-250, 350, 450 and 550.

The company says in documents posted Friday on the U.S. National Highway Traffic Safety Administration website that water and contaminants can get into the heater cable and cause corrosion. That can cause electrical shorts and possible fires. Engine block heaters warm the engines so they can start and warm up faster in extreme cold temperatures.


Dealers will inspect and seal the cable or replace the heaters if needed. The recall is expected to start in the U.S. on Jan. 7.


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Italy Bridge Collapse - Killing 39 People

BBC News, Thursday, August 16, 2018

The Morandi bridge carries a major road, the A10 toll motorway, which serves the Italian Riviera and links northern Italy to France.

Part of the 1.2km (0.8 mile) long bridge spans the Polcevera waterway, with other portions reaching over railway lines and buildings.


A section measuring about 200m fell at around 11:30 local time (09:30 GMT) on Tuesday.


Rescuers have little hope of finding more survivors after a motorway bridge collapsed in the Italian city of Genoa.

The local prefecture say 39 people were killed when dozens of vehicles fell 45m (148ft) from the Morandi bridge during torrential rain.

There will be a national day of mourning on Saturday to coincide with the funerals of victims.


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Leaked pipe causes water to gush up to '3 storeys high'

The Straits Times, Wednesday, September 27, 2017


Singapore - Motorists driving by the junction of Bukit Batok West Avenue 6 and Bukit Batok West Avenue 8 on Tuesday (Sept 26) night were shocked to see water gushing up from the middle of the road.

Water agency PUB said that it received reports of a pipe leak at that junction and isolated the leak with the help of the Singapore Civil Defence Force at 1.50am on Wednesday (Sept 27).

Repair works are now underway.


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Toyota Canada recalls older models due to concerns of rust on suspension

The Associated Press, Friday, August 12, 2016

DETROIT -- Toyota Motor Corp. is recalling 337,000 vehicles for a third time, of which 21,722 were sold in Canada. The recall involves the Toyota RAV4 SUV from the 2006-2011 model years and the Lexus HS250h sedan from the 2010 model year. Toyota first recalled the vehicles in 2012 because of a wobbly rear suspension. The company recalled them again in 2013 because the nuts it used to adjust the rear wheel alignment weren't tightened properly. This time, Toyota found that rust can form on the suspension arm threads if the nuts for the rear wheel alignment weren't tightened correctly. If that happens, the suspension arm could separate from the vehicle and cause the driver to lose control. Toyota will contact known owners of the involved vehicles and replace both rear suspension arm assemblies for free.


Fallen Windows Due to Corrosion of Aluminium Rivets

The Straits Times, Sunday, June 5, 2016


Singapore - There were 16 cases of fallen windows in the first five months this year, the Building and Construction Authority (BCA) said on Sunday.
Of these, 11 were casement windows and five were sliding windows. Most of the fallen casement windows were found to have corroded aluminium rivets which had loosened from the window stays, BCA said.

When a windows falls, homeowners responsible can be fined up to $5,000 and/or jailed up to 6 months for failing to replace aluminium rivets in casement windows with stainless steel rivets.

If a window falls due to lack of maintenance, the homeowner responsible may be fined up to $10,000 and/or jailed up to a year.

Since 2006, 303 people have been fined and 76 people have been prosecuted for fallen windows.


Ford Recalls More Than 591,000 Vehicles Due to CORROSION and Nickel Plating Issues

Toronto Sun, Wednesday, April 29, 2015


DETROIT - Ford Motor Co said on Wednesday it is recalling more than 591,000 vehicles in North America for four separate problems, including possible broken bolts that could make steering more difficult.

The No. 2 U.S. automaker said it is recalling 518,313 Ford Fusion and Lincoln MKZ sedans from model years 2013-2015 and Ford Edge crossover vehicle from 2015 model year because steering gear motor attachment bolts may break due to corrosion. In that case, the steering system would default to manual mode, making it more difficult to steer, especially at lower speeds.

While no total loss of steering would occur, the problem could increase the risk of a crash, Ford said.

Ford said it was not aware of any accidents or injuries in the recall. Of the affected vehicles, 487,301 are in the United States and its territories, and 31,012 in Canada.

Dealers will replace the bolts and any damaged steering gear at no cost, Ford said. Customers located in non-corrosion states or provinces will be covered by an extended warranty.

Ford also recalled 50,157 Ford Focus, Edge Escape and Transit Connect vehicles from 2014 model year and Fiesta cars from 2014-2015 model years because of a nickel plating issue that could cause the fuel pump to seize. That could cause the vehicle to fail to start or to stall while driving.

Ford said it was aware of one incident that may be related to this issue.

Of the recalled vehicles, 45,505 vehicles are in the United States, 4,618 are in Canada and 34 are in Mexico. Dealers will replace the fuel delivery module.

Ford recalled 22,616 Lincoln MKZ sedans from 2015 model year because the parking lamps may be brighter than regulations allow, adversely affecting the vision of oncoming drivers. Of the affected vehicles, 21,435 are in the United States, 1,066 are in Canada and 115 are in Mexico.

Dealers will update software that controls the intensity of the lamps. Ford said it was not aware of any accidents or injuries related to the issue.

Ford also recalled 91 Ford F-150 pickup trucks from model year 2015 for potential underbody heat shield issues that increase the risk of a fire. Of the affected vehicles, 73 are in the United States and 18 in Canada.

Dealers will install missing parts as needed. Ford said it was not aware of any accidents or injuries.


FAA Orders Inspections on Boeing's 737 Aircraft

The Wall Street Journal, Sunday, April 14, 2013

Federal aviation regulators on Monday will order special inspections and, if needed, replacement of improperly manufactured parts on more than 1,000 Boeing Co. 737 jets that could cause pilots to lose control.

Industry officials said the directive is unusual because it applies to factory defects potentially affecting such a large number of planes, particularly relatively new versions of the most widely used jetliner flown by carriers world-wide.

The Federal Aviation Administration's safety mandate covers certain corrosion-prone pins used to attach movable tail panels to the jetliner's fuselage.

The order was prompted by "reports of an incorrect procedure used to apply the wear and corrosion protection surface coating" to the affected parts, which the agency determined could result "in premature failure" of the attachments and potentially "loss of control of the airplane," the directive says.

Serious failures or structural weakness involving horizontal stabilizer -�movable tail surfaces perpendicular to rudders�potentially can be deadly because they may put planes into steep dives or climbs that pilots may be unable to prevent.

The FAA rejected industry requests to exclude some planes from inspections on the grounds that complex schedules for deliveries of new aircraft and spare parts otherwise make "identification of the affected planes difficult." The FAA estimated maximum total compliance costs at about $10 million for U.S. carriers.

Five Boeing Dreamliners Need Repair Due to Corrosion Inside the Gearbox

AFP, Mon, 23 July 2012

TOKYO - All Nippon Airways said Monday it was repairing five Boeing 787 Dreamliner jets for an engine defect, the latest problem for the troubled airliner.

The Japanese carrier grounded the planes following an announcement last week by the Dreamliner's engine manufacturer Rolls-Royce about a problem in its gearbox, a spokeswoman said.

Two jets have since returned to service, the spokeswoman said, adding that Rolls-Royce discovered the defect - corrosion inside the gearbox - during endurance tests.

Hazardous Corrosion on Movable Tail Parts on Boeing 757 Jets

The Wall Street Journal, Monday, October 24, 2011

U.S. regulators want airlines to check for hazardous corrosion on movable tail parts on hundreds of Boeing 757 jets that could result in pilots losing control of aircraft.

The Federal Aviation Administration proposed on Monday a mandatory safety directive covering devices that control tail sections, called horizontal stabilizers, that help raise and lower the noses of more than 700 Boeing 757s flown by U.S. carriers. Eventually, the checks are expected to apply to hundreds of additional Boeing 757s operated by overseas airlines.

The move comes nearly 11 years after a maintenance lapse helped cause a similar device to fail on the tail of an Alaska Airlines McDonnell Douglas MD-83 off the Southern California coast, rendering the plane uncontrollable and sending it into a dive that killed all 88 people aboard. Investigators eventually determined that faulty aircraft design, slipshod maintenance and inadequate federal oversight all contributed to the high-profile accident.

In 2002, the National Transportation Safety Board called on Boeing and other aircraft makers to launch a "systematic engineering review" to prevent such potentially catastrophic failures of flight controls on thousands of jetliners.

Since that accident, Chicago-based Boeing's design reviews and safety analyses found "extensive corrosion" on one 757 that "could lead to loss of control of the horizontal stabilizer and consequent loss of control of the airplane," according to the FAA.

Nissan Recalls 600,000 Vehicles: Steering Shafts Could Crack From Corrosion
The Vancouver Sun, Friday, 12 November 2010

 Nissan Motor Co. is recalling about 600,000 Frontier pickup trucks and Xterra sport-utility vehicles because their steering shafts could crack from corrosion. No accidents have been linked with this problem, Nissan said in a statement. Nissan said it found that the lower steering column joint can corrode, putting limits on its movement. In extreme cases, this can lead to the cracking of the steering shaft. The automaker received three reports of this problem in Canada and six in Brazil. An official with Nissan Canada said there was no information available on the number of vehicles recalled here, but that all owners affected would be notified.

The affected cars were manufactured at Nissan's plant in Smyrna, Tennessee, between July 2001 and January 2005 and at its Curitiba, Brazil, plant from November 2001 to June 2008. Additionally, the automaker is recalling about 18,500 Sentra sedans due to a faulty battery connection that could make starting the cars difficult and cause stalling at low speeds.

Problems Spring Up for 2003-6 Saab 9-3s

The New York Times, April 2, 2010


General Motors is offering an extended warranty on about 66,000 2003-6 Saab 9-3s to cover the cost of replacing front springs that break due to corrosion.


The new warranty is 10 years or 120,000 miles, whichever comes first, according to a February letter sent to owners. It also says owners who already paid are eligible for reimbursement.


Alan Adler, a G.M. spokesman, said the letter was sent to owners in Canada and states that use a lot of road salt. Those were Connecticut, Delaware, Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Maine, Maryland, Massachusetts, Michigan, Minnesota, Missouri, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New York, Ohio, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, Washington, D.C., Vermont, West Virginia, and Wisconsin


Falling Concrete Slab Kills Woman at Montreal Restaurant
CTV News Montreal, Friday, 17 July 2009

It was supposed to be a quiet, romantic dinner for Lea Guilbeault and Hani Beitinjaneh, who were enjoying a summer evening at the Mikasa Sushi Bar on Peel St. in the heart of downtown Montreal. Instead, Beitinjaneh was left shocked and horrified Thursday evening as a concrete slab fell from high above, crashing through the atrium window of the restaurant and falling on his 33-year-old wife, killing her instantly.

The slab of concrete fell from the 18th floor of the Marriott Residence Inn, smashing through the ceiling of the enclosed glass section of the restaurant, located at street level. "It hit the woman right on the head, and her head was smashed..." said Kali Subramanian, a witness who became emotional while describing what he saw. "It's's a sad way to die. Somebody eating at a restaurant, and it happens like that."

How did it happen?

Hellen Christodoulou, an engineer, told CTV News the concrete may have fallen because of corrosion or water seepage.

Rusty Containers Lead to US$8 million Court Claim
The Straits Times, Tuesday, 13 January 2009

Mainboard-listed United Engineers (UE) told the High Court yesterday that Steel Trading, a unit of Goodpack, has not paid for the intermediate bulk containers which are used to transport various forms of cargo. But Steel Trading is counter-claiming US$8 million, alleging in court documents that many of the containers were rusty. The containers - several of which can fit into a standard shipping container - were made by UE's Indonesian unit, PT United Engineers Indonesia.

Steel Trading said the rust had left cargo such as fruit or rubber contaminated. UE denies the allegations. The agreements to build the containers were terminated in 2005. Steel Trading later complained to PT United Engineers that 13,490 containers were rusty.

Why Did the Bridge Fall?
Time Thursday, 2 August 2007

It may take several days to figure out how many people died in Wednesday's collapse of the I-35W bridge in Minneapolis yesterday - the official toll still stands at four, but nobody expects it to stay there. Between 20 and 30 people are still missing, and while some of them may be lying in hospitals, unconscious and unidentified, plenty of cars are still submerged in the Mississippi River. Anyone trapped inside - and there are such people - are no longer alive. So recovery crews are picking their way carefully around the twisted steel and broken concrete that could shift without warning in the muddy current.

Investigators, meanwhile, from the National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) and from a private firm of forensic engineers hired by the state of Minnesota, have already arrived to begin trying to figure out what happened. That might not be easy. Sometimes a bridge collapses for glaringly obvious reasons - being whacked by a barge, for example. That's what knocked down Florida's Sunshine Skyway bridge in 1980, killing 35 people, and the I-40 bridge near Webbers Falls, Oklahoma, in 2002, killing 14, and a causeway in Louisiana in 1964, killing 14.

But in other cases - the Mianus River Bridge in Connecticut (three dead in 1983) or the Silver Bridge, spanning the Ohio River between Ohio and West Virginia (46 dead in 1967) - the cause is far more subtle. The former was triggered by metal fatigue in a single steel pin: when it finally failed, the loss of support transferred excess stress on other parts, which couldn't handle it, failing in turn. The latter was finally traced, again, to a single piece of metal, which had been forged with a tiny, unnoticed crack that weakened further with corrosion.

Corrosion may have played a role here as well: the Minneapolis bridge - what's known as a deck steel truss bridge - was a concrete roadway supported by gridwork of steel. "When you use both concrete and steel like this," says William Miller, an expert on bridge engineering at Temple University in Philadelphia, "there can be chemical reactions going on where these two very different substances meet. This is especially a problem in extreme climates where water can get into the cracks between supports, freeze and expand and cause a huge amount of damage." Beyond that, says Miller, "concrete is a very forgiving material, and so it can stand up to a lot of cracking and wear. Steel on the other hand, cannot." In a place like Minnesota, where road crews dump corrosive ice melter on roadways by the ton in winter, the problem is even worse.

But since civil engineers know all this, how come they didn't spot the weak points? It may well be that the real breaking point was hidden, or simply wasn't obvious under normal inspection. In fact, as everyone knows by now, the bridge was deemed "structurally deficient" starting in 1990. That didn't result in an emergency repair order, but rather an intention to replace the bridge by 2020 - not unusual, evidently, since the designation doesn't suggest imminent danger. According to Minnesota Gov. Tim Pawlenty, speaking Thursday afternoon at a press conference, there are no fewer 70,000 to 80,000 bridges in the U.S. in the same category; at least another 80,000 are considered "functionally obsolete," or not up to current design standards, another label that fails to testify to a structure's safety for travel.

Minneapolis Bridge Collapse Killing 7
AP Wednesday, 1 August 2007

MINNEAPOLIS - An interstate bridge jammed with rush-hour traffic suddenly broke into huge sections and collapsed into the Mississippi River Wednesday, pitching dozens of cars 60 feet into the water and killing at least seven people.

The steel-arched bridge, which was built in 1967, rose about 64 feet above the river and stretched about 1,900 feet across the river. The bridge was built with a single 458-foot-long steel arch to avoid putting any piers in the water that might interfere with river navigation. The bridge was scheduled for inspection this fall.



Sony Recalls Digital Cameras Over Metal Plating Defects
30 July 2007

30 July 2007 - Sony is recalling 416,000 digital cameras because the case may warp, creating an edge that can cut or scratch the user's hands. Sony has issued a safety alert about certain batches of its "Cyber-shot" DSC-T5 digital still camera. The metal plating on the bottom of the camera unit may warp, causing slight cuts or scratching to the skin of the user. The metal plating of some DSC-T5 units may peel away from the camera unit and warp outward. The adhesive strength of the metal plating is too weak, so damage to the bottom casing can cause the plating to peel away and warp outward. The manufacturer is offering a free replacement of the bottom casing. Sony says that although the metal plating of units with other serial numbers may peel away if dropped or exposed to some other external impact, the plating will not warp. The recall affects 350,000 Cyber Shot DSC-T5 cameras sold in the United States, Europe and China, and about 66,000 sold in Japan, Sony spokeswoman Ryoko Takagi said.

NYC explosion of steam pipe 'like a volcano'
USA Today  Wednesday, 18 July 2007

NEW YORK — A steam pipe blew up near Grand Central Terminal on Monday and sent thousands of people running out of buildings in a panic that it was a terror attack. "The building started shaking. There was steam and smoke billowing out of the ground," said Bryan Kohler, an accountant who works from a seventh-floor office on Third Avenue. "Everybody panicked. You know what it's like now. We grabbed our stuff and ran."

The pipe blew at about 6 p.m., the height of rush hour, and sent a geyser of mud, steam and scalding water into the air on 41st Street, according to witnesses. White steam clouds rose as high as the nearby 77-story Chrysler Building. One person was killed and 26 others were wounded as the ruptured pipe sent thick plumes of smoke and ash into the air.

New York City still uses steam to heat and cool many buildings, including the Empire State Building. In 1989 a steam explosion ripped through a street, killing three people. The 2-foot pipe that burst Monday was installed in 1925.

CTE TUNNEL CEILING SLAB COLLAPSE LTA to take preventive measures
The Straits Times Wednesday, 23 May 2007

CENTRAL Expressway (CTE) tunnels will now be inspected more closely and frequently, the Land Transport Authority (LTA) said yesterday - two weeks after a concrete slab the size of a car's bonnet fell from a tunnel ceiling.

The checks will be carried out every three months on stretches which are under waterways, and every six months in other areas. Previously, the inspections were conducted once a year. The LTA said also that it will apply an electrochemical treatment - zinc hydrogel anode - to tunnels located under waterways. The zinc reacts with the steel in the concrete to form a weak electrical current - as in a battery - which helps impede corrosion. On the evening of May 9, chunks of concrete from the ceiling of a south-bound tunnel, which goes under the Singapore River - fell onto the road. Miraculously, no vehicles were hit. The cause has been identified as concrete spalling, which happens when steel beams in concrete rust and expand. The tunnels have been troubled with water seepage since the CTE opened in 1991, though millions of dollars have been spent to arrest leaks at nearly 2,000 points.

Yesterday, the LTA reiterated that the tunnels are structurally safe. It said that spalling "will not lead to a reduction in strength of the structure if attended to with proper repairs". However, certified corrosion specialist Qiu Jianhai told The Straits Times that "spalling concrete is just a visible surface problem signalling the start of the deterioration of the structure". He said that if corrosion control had been incorporated at the point of construction, it would have been cheaper. Dr Qiu, incidentally, also advocated the zinc hydrogel treatment.

Falling Concrete in CTE Tunnel Engineers, MP call for thorough check
The Straits Times Friday, 11 May 2007

TROUBLED with leaks from the time it opened in 1991, the Central Expressway (CTE) tunnels should be given a thorough check to prevent more slabs of spalling concrete from smashing onto the road. This was what civil engineers, motorists and the deputy chairman of the Government Parliamentary Committee (GPC) for Transport said yesterday, after chunks of concrete came crashing down around 8pm on Wednesday.

This happened on the southbound CTE tunnel towards the Ayer Rajah Expressway, near the Havelock exit - a stretch that is built under the Singapore River. Miraculously, the slabs did not hit any vehicle at what is usually a fairly busy time of day in the tunnel. The Land Transport Authority (LTA) says the tunnel was safe and Wednesday's incident was "an isolated one". LTA chief engineer Paul Fok said checks are done regularly to spot and fix any defects. On top of that, professional engineers inspect all tunnels "at least once every five years" to certify their structural integrity. He added: "The structural integrity of the CTE tunnels is not affected. We have checked the surrounding areas and found no areas of concern." The authorities have insisted that leaks are common in tunnels the world over, although tunnel builders that The Straits Times spoke to say that watertight tunnels are feasible to construct. "There are sections of MRT tunnels here that are dry, even those going under rivers. But others leak," said a construction source. "It all depends on time, cost and the quality of people who designed and built the project."

'Why wasn't pipeline pigged?'
Anchorage Daily News, 14 Oct. 2006

Alaska's congressional delegation on Friday grilled BP executives and government regulators about Prudhoe Bay oil leaks and, in particular, this week's revelation that state officials had ordered BP to clean sludge out of key pipelines in 2002 but let the company off the hook three months later.

Federal pipeline regulators believe the sludge that BP allowed to accumulate inside the pipes for many years might have harbored corrosives that ate holes through the steel, leading to a 201,000-gallon oil spill last winter and a second leak in early August that forced an emergency partial shutdown of the nation's largest oil field.

BP TRIAL: Browne called to testify over refinery blast
Financial Times, 18 Sept. 2006

Plaintiffs' lawyers who earlier agreed not to call Lord Browne, BP's chief executive, to testify in the civil cases arising from last year's fatal Texas refinery explosion, said they now intended to question the head of the UK oil group.

Mr Buzbee said he would ask Lord Browne about BP's practices across the US, including Alaska, where the company had to shut half its oilfield because of severe corrosion, to determine whether the company has a pattern of neglect, underfunding and underinvestment. There is a whole bevy of topics I want to bring up with Lord Browne, Mr Buzbee said.

Corrosive insulating paper triggered Sony's third laptop battery recall
The Straits Times Wednesday, 20 September 2006

TOSHIBA said yesterday that it will replace 340,000 faulty laptop batteries worldwide, in the third recall in two months involving Sony-made batteries. The latest recall brings the total number of Sony batteries recalled this year to about six million worldwide.

A Sony spokesman said the batteries involved in the latest Toshiba recall suffer from a different problem, caused by the corrosive effects of the insulating paper used in the battery packs.

Shell pays up after water gets into vehicles' fuel tanks
The Straits Times Tuesday, 29 August 2006

FIVE vehicles which pulled into a Shell station in Palan Jurong Kechil recently were served watered-down petrol. An undetected puncture in an underground fuel pipe - 2mm wick and likely the result of corrosion - caused a substantial amount of water in the soil to get into the pump.

Vehicles which took in the adulterated petrol - four cars and a motorcycle - suffered varying degree of damages. For one owner, Shell agreed to throw in a two-year warranty on the car - on top of the three-year new-car warranty - and $10,000 in compensation.

Corrosion, oil spill prompt shutdown of Alaskan oil field
AP: 7 August 2006

ANCHORAGE, Alaska (AP) - BP Exploration Alaska has begun shutting down the Prudhoe Bay oil field. The company says it has discovered unexpectedly severe corrosion and a small spill from an oil transit pipeline. Company officials say it will take days to shut down the field. Once the shutdown is complete, it's expected to reduce oil field production by 400,000 barrels a day. In a prepared statement, BP America Chairman and President Bob Malone says the company regrets that it's necessary to take the action. And he says the company apologizes to the nation and to Alaska "for the adverse impacts it will cause." Prudhoe Bay represents about half of Alaska's oil production and about eight percent of U-S production, according to the US Energy Information Administration.

HDB's vow: Fewer defects, longer warranties
The Straits Times Wednesday, 29 September 2004

THE Housing Board has vowed to reduce the cases of spalling concrete and water seepage in its new flats - and hopes to back it up with much longer warranties against these defects.

Even if 1 or 2 per cent of flats have such problems, 'it's a lot', said HDB chief executive Niam Chiang Meng during its annual report briefing on Monday.

The board has asked a new building quality department to see how common defects can be prevented, he said. And he has 'challenged' his staff to eventually offer 10-year guarantees against spalling concrete and five-year ones against water seepage.

Seepage in new flats has been an issue recently, as most home owners have to pay the cost of repairs once the one-year defect liability period - when faults are fixed for free - expires.

In the first six months of this year, 21 flats less than 10 years old had spalling concrete. This is when ceilings crack when steel bars embedded in concrete corrode and expand. Based on that figure, two out of every 10,000 such flats have the problem each year.

In the first half of this year, 372 flats less than five years old also had water leaking through their ceilings. This works out to seven out of every 1,000 such flats each year.

The figure for water seeping in through walls was 444, or eight out of every 1,000 flats less than five years old each year.

Killer Windows: The heat is on to retrofit windows
The Straits Times Monday, 8 September 2004

A HOME owner with casement windows five years old or more who does not change the aluminium rivets to stainless steel ones by 30 September 2005 faces a maximum fine of $5,000 or six months' jail, or both.

He also faces fines of up to $500 for each day after his conviction that he still does not do the retrofitting. The changes were made to the Building Control Act passed by Parliament last Wednesday.

The Act had been amended in 1999 to allow for a maximum penalty of $5,000 fine and six months' jail for those who did not make their air-conditioners safe from falling by Sept 30, 2000.

With the current amendment, the Government's powers will be broadened to include all external features of a building that could pose a danger to the public and to impose a daily fine for those who refuse to act after a conviction.

The new law was prompted by the rise in the number of falling windows from just 19 in 2000 to 106 last year, mostly from HDB flats. Up until last month, 84 cases were reported this year and all were from HDB flats.

Lamp post corrosion: Three experts split
The Straits Times Tuesday, 8 June 2004

A THIRD expert witness, testifying in a coroner's inquiry into the death of a teenager hit by a falling lamp post, has added to the array of opinions over which part of the post was most severely corroded.

Associate Professor Qiu Jianhai, 41, a corrosion expert from the Nanyang Technological University's School of Materials Engineering, said corrosion occurred exactly at the ground level.

Earlier in the inquiry, two expert witnesses had been divided on whether the lamp post was corroded above or below ground level. This is central to the issue of whether a person doing a visual check of the lamp post could have seen the rusted area and taken action that might have prevented the fatal incident.

On Feb 28 last year, secondary school student Tay Wei Yi, 13, was playing volleyball at a Tampines basketball court when the lamp post fell and hit him on the head. A senior property officer with Tampines Town Council's managing agent had visually checked the lamp post three weeks before the incident but had not noticed any defects.

Dr Qiu said the most severe corrosion took place not above or below ground, but just at ground level. The 'junction' between the atmosphere and the soil would be the most severely corroded because of the 'wetting and drying' process due to collected rainwater, he said.

LTA spends $4m to tackle CTE water leaks for third time
The Straits Times Friday, 5 September 2003

The LTA is now spending $4 million to lick the persistent problem of leaks that have discoloured and damaged wall surfaces, and left black gunk at the walls' base.

This is the third time in 12 years that the Government is tackling the problem, first spotted about a month after the tunnels opened in 1991.

Previous attempts, costing several millions, failed.

The authorities have insisted that leaks are common in tunnels and are not dangerous, although some experts reckon water might compromise the integrity of the steel beams in the concrete over time.

Sony Digital Camera DSC-P1 Battery Issue
Wednesday, 16 April 2003

Sony has released a statement on its support site about a potential issue affecting some of its Cyber-shot DSC-P1 digital cameras. The cameras may exhibit shorter time between charges and/or the inaccurate indication of the need for battery recharging. The issue seems to be caused by corrosion on the connection between the AC adaptor and the camera. This symptom often results from accumulated corrosion at the connection between the supplied AC adaptor and the DSC-P1 camera.

Boy hit on head by lamp post dies
The Straits Times Wednesday, 7 March 2003

Tay Wei Yi, the 13-year old boy who was hit on the head by a lamp post which was fell over last week, died yesterday morning at Changi General Hospital.

Tragic Collapse: Boy hit by falling lamp post
The New Paper  Sunday 2 March 2003

A Tampines teenage is fighting for his life after being hit by a falling lamp post on Friday night.

Tay Wei Yi, 13, lies unconscious in the intensive care ward of Changi General Hospital.

He was playing with with schoolmates at a basketball court in Tampines when the accident happened around 7pm. A lamp post at the side of the court collapsed without warning, knocking him to the ground.

[WebCorr comment: Computer modeling software, Soil-Compass for modeling and prediction of corrosion of metals and alloys in soil environment can provide early indication of the metal loss due to corrosion BEFORE catastrophic failure occurs.]

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