Learning from Others (Structural Safety)
As I continue to pursue my career in structural engineering, the recurring theme is that we never stop learning. The more experiences we collect the better our knowledge becomes and the better we can engineer good, safe, buildable structures.
The harshest lessons come from failure, so a valuable tool that we all have is to share in the experiences of others from across the profession and indeed across the globe. To this end a great resource is the Structural Safety website https://www.structural-safety.org/ where CROSS (Confidential Reporting on Structural Safety) reports and newsletters are freely published. These reports both teach us and remind us of where failures, near misses and concerns have been raised relating to inadequate design practices, poor construction, and material limitations along with their potential consequences.
Read the CROSS reports, add to your knowledge, drawing upon the experience of others and avoid your own harsh lessons from failure.
Because CROSS reports are a collection of real-life experiences, they sometimes fly in the face of research, or industry understanding on a topic. In these instances the reports can also help the industry to adapt to what is really happening.