[By Shideh] A 7-story building in Tehran collapsed today, sadly killing at least 3 people. The design engineers and contractors have been arrested and they currently face trial. The mayor of Tehran, Mr. Qalibaf, has blamed the engineering community (Nezam e Mohandesi) for failing to properly oversee the design and construction practice and has requested the judiciary branch to penalize the responsible parties severely.
Photo courtesy of BBC
According to the ISNA news, the city of Tehran has evacuated the buildings around the collapsed structure until they are closely evaluated.
I’m glad that the media is giving this event proper attention and the responsible agencies are under the magnifying glass of national and international news sources. It seems to me, however, that the city of Tehran, under the supervision of the new mayor, has improved to respond to such failures with a higher sense of authority and strength.
I personally hope that the responsible parties, either engineers, contractors, or owners who did not design the building properly or did not completely evacuate the building on time after noticing the excessive settlement of the column, will be penalized with no room for bribery. This is a fundamental step in training the engineering community toward ethical and responsible practice where negligence can lead to such life-threatening disasters. This event reminds me of an old post in which I wrote about a quote by one of my professors here in Berkeley: “you have the power of God in your hands as engineers, you can save lives and can take lives.”
My fellow aghaayoon va khaanoom haye “Mohandess”, let’s remember that with such power, comes great responsibility.