Analyses and investigations are based on using a Failure Modes and Effects Analysis (“FMEA”) approach where emphais is on identifying potential modes of failure and symptoms. In many cases there can be more than one abnormal condition present.
The approach relies on sound engineering principals and investigation as to potential failure modes and effects and symptoms which would be indicative of the failure observed.
This approach is essentially the same as a “cause and origin” investigation with emphasis on evaluating and assessing a range of possible reasons for the failure to identify the most likely one and the symptoms evident based on the observable facts.
Research is conducted to learn of other similar conditions and events which may have a bearing on determining the cause of the failure or which may be verified or discounted based on engineering analysis and empirical experience. The experience of the investigator is brought to bear in the analysis of the situation.
The rationale and background for use of this FMEA "approach" is further described at:
A summary of his credentials can be found here.
The FMEA approach as used is applicable to investigation of a wide range of failure situations. In addition to roof failure and tile floor failure, it can be applied to water leaks, structural subsidance, sewer line failure, falling objects, fires, etc. This approach has been successfully used for over 1000 investigations.
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