Case Study: Hyatt Regency Disaster

Amazing Essays
MCET 450: Mechanical Analysis & Design I
Hyatt Regency Disaster

Written by: Douglas Chu, Andrew Smilinich, Brian Esposito
Assignment Date: August 25, 2015
Due Date: September 1, 2015

Introduction: The Hyatt Regency disaster took place in Kansas City, Missouri on July 17, 1981. This tragedy occurred during a large gathering of people for the annual tea dance (Engineering Ethics:The Kansas city Hyatt Regency Walkways Collapse). According to the filed report the “atrium area was estimated at 1500 to 2000” people at the time of the collapse (Marshall,V). At this instant the 2nd and 4th floor walkways collapsed due to poor engineering design. This disaster had a totaled “113 people dead and 186 injured” (Marshall,V). The people who were
…show more content…
Ultimately the load on the fourth floor was doubled, with no changes being made to the already 40% under-code fourth floor support beam (Engineering Ethics: The Kansas City Hyatt Regency Walkways Collapse). This is what led to the skywalks disastrous collapse during the Tea dance at the Hyatt Regency hotel. Aside from the fourth floor beam being overrated in strength, there were also two other defects, of the same nature. The first was that in order to account for the added load, stiffener plates should have been added to the section of the beam where the hanger rods attached (Hyatt Hotel Collapse Minute by Minute Part 5 of 5). The engineering company assumed that the manufacturing facility knew this fact and had failed to mention its existence, depicting the crossover of engineering and communication …show more content…
Telephone calls disputed however; because of alleged communications between engineer and fabricator, Shop Drawing 30 and Erection Drawing E3 are changed” (Engineering Ethics:The Kansas city Hyatt Regency Walkways Collapse). Gillum Colaco Inc. denied any speculation of communicating with Haven Steel, but sources say that there was a stamp of approval for the new modifications coming directly from a licensed professional engineer. There was an apparent lack of communication between engineering and fabrication, but further investigation reveals a lack of property owner involvement. One lack of communication from the owner 's standpoint is that there should have been a contractor/inspector that overlooked the entire modification process. The contractor is implemented to insure that building codes are followed, designs are correct, and proper construction is in place (Engineering Ethics:The Kansas city Hyatt Regency Walkways Collapse). To ensure a high quality and well designed product, there should be a system of checks and balances in place between the owner, engineers, and

Related Documents

  • Decent Essays

    On November 21 1980 the 26 story MGM Grand Hotel and Casino in Las Vegas, Nevada was occupied by approximately 5000 people when a tragic fire broke out in the restaurant known as “The Deli” as a result of a ground fault in the wall killing 85 people. A major contributor to the deaths was combustible furnishings, interior finishes, foam padding and moldings, air supply, and a very large undivided area that allowed for rapid fire spread and heavy smoke. Construction of the hotel and casino began in 1972 and was opened in December 1973. With approximately two million square feet of area only partial fire sprinkler protection was installed in the arcade, showrooms and convention areas on the ground level only. During construction the owners decided…

    • 722 Words
    • 3 Pages
    Decent Essays
  • Decent Essays

    It was extremely horrible that it took more than 8,000 of their fellow citizens. At the time of the 1900 hurricane, Galveston, was filled with people on vacation and tourists from all over the world. Weather prediction technology didn’t exist at the time. A 15-foot storm surge flooded the city, which was then placed at less than 9 feet above sea level, and various homes and buildings were demolished. With winds at high speeds and fifteen foot floods, together had destroyed everything and anything in…

    • 1649 Words
    • 7 Pages
    Decent Essays
  • Decent Essays

    Chicago Flood Essay

    • 976 Words
    • 4 Pages

    “Anything manmade needs maintenance or it will deteriorate over time.” Bruce Moffat says, regarding the shape the tunnels are in. Another channel through which the flood could have been stopped is the issue of James Mctigue and his boss, General Services Commissioner Ben Reyes.The mayor deemed Reyes innocent of indirectly or directly causing the flood, even though he learned of the leaking in mid-march, told by Mctigue´s supervisor, Syed Ahmad (though he did not receive punishment either). Mctigue investigated the leak site, tipped off by a television crew that found the leak. He took pictures of it, but was unable to pick them up from a drugstore due to a snowstorm that week. By then, the photos were useless and the city already knew about the…

    • 976 Words
    • 4 Pages
    Decent Essays
  • Decent Essays

    They then saw the South Tower engulfed by smoke. People then realized the unthinkable happened as they saw the South Tower collapse only fifty-six minutes after it had been hit. As the tower collapsed, blooms of smoke, dust, and office supplies filled the streets and nearby rivers. Bystanders had to run away or seek shelter from the huge dust cloud coming near them. (“One Nation” 49) At 10:28, the North Tower of the World Trade Center collapsed 102 minutes after being hit.…

    • 2154 Words
    • 9 Pages
    Decent Essays
  • Decent Essays

    In June 2017, the Attorney General officially charged eight state and city officials of involuntary manslaughter for their death. In conclusion, this was an excellent case of environmental injustice. The injustice spanned 50 years before it was actually addressed. Several industrial plants dumped millions of waste over the years and the water was never treated properly. The city officials were aware of the issue and still voted to switch the water supply to Flint River.…

    • 760 Words
    • 4 Pages
    Decent Essays
  • Decent Essays

    On 17 July 1981, two suspended walkways of the Hyatt Regency in Kansas City, Missouri, collapsed. This killed 114 and injured 200 people at the event. The rod supporting the walkways were designed correctly. However, the contractor changed the design of the connecting rod making the force acting on the connection double. That is an example of the risk that can happen in the real world structure.…

    • 840 Words
    • 4 Pages
    Decent Essays
  • Decent Essays

    By the time the accident was discovered nearly half of the nuclear reactor’s core had completely melted. 73 seconds post-launch the space shuttle Challenger exploded killing all of the seven astronauts onboard. NASA workers who had only slept two hours prior to working rejected an engineer’s recommendation to postpone the launch. The Presidential Commission on the Space Shuttle Challenger Accident report stated “time pressure… increased the potential for sleep loss and judgment errors,” and that working “excessive hours, while admirable, raises serious questions when it jeopardizes job performance, particularly when critical management decisions are at stake.” (Qtd. In Philips).…

    • 1486 Words
    • 6 Pages
    Decent Essays
  • Decent Essays

    Essay On Hurricane Harvey

    • 524 Words
    • 3 Pages

    About 1,833 died as a result of Katrina, while 82 were killed in Hurricane Harvey. 80 percent of New Orleans became submerged under floodwater and the water stayed high for weeks. Many parts of Houston also have soil made from clay, a material that does not absorb water well (Zimmerman). The day before Katrina hit New Orleans, for the first time ever, Mayor Ray Nagin called for a mandatory evacuation. The people of New Orleans who had become homeless and had nothing used the Superdome Stadium as shelter.…

    • 524 Words
    • 3 Pages
    Decent Essays
  • Decent Essays

    It is Sunday, April 14, 1912, at 11:39 pm. The shout, “ICEBERG RIGHT AHEAD!!!!!! !” is heard. 37 seconds later, the Titanic hits an iceberg and starts to sink. The sinking lost more than half of the ship’s crew and passengers.…

    • 702 Words
    • 3 Pages
    Decent Essays
  • Decent Essays

    With the fact that it could had helped the case, it was rejected. For example, it’s stated in the case file that the report might had been marginally helpful to the plaintiffs of the transportation of the chemicals from the tannery to the wells, though there was no evidence that Beatrice disposed the chemical at either the tannery or the 15-acre parcel. Throughout the case, it was believed to be unnecessary by defendant and judge for it to continue. Thinking about their own work and jobs, they continue to deny of the effects of the toxins that they put into the water and…

    • 633 Words
    • 3 Pages
    Decent Essays