forums
new posts
donate
UER Store
events
location db
db map
search
members
faq
terms of service
privacy policy
register
login




UER Forum > Rookie Forum > Underground Structural Integrity (Viewed 137 times)
Aran 


Location: Madison, WI
Gender: Male
Total Likes: 313 likes


Combining form and functionality

 |  | 
Underground Structural Integrity
< on 6/9/2018 10:12 AM >
Reply with Quote
Posted on Forum: UER Forum
I've been reading up on my city's storm drain system, and I've found that apparently there are some pretty interesting brick drains I want to go looking for once we get a few days without rain here. Unfortunately, there is a slight potential issue with these drains.

The oldest drains in this city (the brick ones I want to find) were built over one hundred years years ago. According to a statement issued by a city utility manager, inspecting the storm drain pipes is not a priority. Reading between the lines, it is possible that some of these drains have not been inspected since their construction.

This by itself wouldn't be quite as worrying, except for the numerous sinkholes in the last five years caused by structural failures of the city's water utilities- including a sixteen foot deep sinkhole the size of a car that formed just last year when one of the brick storm drains collapsed. Considering my desire to find and explore these brick drains, it is a concern.

So, we've all heard about how to judge the structural integrity of an abandoned building, but how about the structural integrity of drains and tunnels? What are the signs of structural damage to a drain, and should I even be concerned at all?



[last edit 6/9/2018 10:15 AM by Aran - edited 1 times]

At the end of the day, we're all just archaeologists who jumped the gun.

Flickr: https://www.flickr...ple/161731563@N02/
Abby Normal 


Location: Las Vegas
Gender: Female
Total Likes: 407 likes




 |  |  | Mine Explorer
Re: Underground Structural Integrity
< Reply # 1 on 6/9/2018 1:49 PM >
Reply with Quote
Posted on Forum: UER Forum
I just got back from England where I spent time exploring galena mines that have miles of passages that were brick lined and arch shaped (to hold the weight from above). I think that your own judgement will go a long way towards telling you if you want to go further into a drain or if it's obviously too dangerous.

For me there would be two major indicators to look for:

First is if you see bulges or distortions in the bricks. The passages we explored were arch shaped and it was pretty obvious where pressure was starting to move the walls around.

Second would be to look for places that bricks have fallen out of the walls or ceilings, especially out of the ceilings. These types of brick tunnels rely on transferring load from one brick to the adjacent brick. Any brick that has fallen out, been crushed, or otherwise failed is a place of unusual loads and potential collapse.

A couple of friends of mine found their way into the Victorian sewers below London. The photos were amazing. The craftsmanship of the brickwork is like nothing I've ever seen. Just beautiful.

So if you head into the tunnels, make certain to take a camera and share the photos with us.

Hope this helped!

Abby Normal




"Government is not a solution to our problem, government is the problem." Ronald Reagan
blackhawk 


Location: High Plains Drifter
Total Likes: 2099 likes


Lupo fantasma, Luceo non uro

 |  |  | 
Re: Underground Structural Integrity
< Reply # 2 on 6/9/2018 2:46 PM >
Reply with Quote
Posted on Forum: UER Forum
Abby gives sound info.
Just because it's old doesn't mean it's unstable.
Trust nothing. Anything anchored to the walls can fail with no warning.

Confined spaces are high hazard by their nature even if the structure is stable.
No rain is not a guarantee the tunnel will not experience a unexpected (by you) heavy flow.
Be careful and know where your exit points are; bug out asap if things seem to go south.
That means leaving everything that's not on your person... the sound of rushing water is death.

The air may not support life, with no SCBA you will likely die if you walk into an area like this. Your only warning maybe as you black out into oblivion.




Life's so much better when you can share...
2Xplorations 


Location: Texas by God
Gender: Male
Total Likes: 982 likes


Tyrannosaurus Wrecks

 |  |  | Anatomy of a Serial Explorer
Re: Underground Structural Integrity
< Reply # 3 on 6/9/2018 5:52 PM >
Reply with Quote
Posted on Forum: UER Forum
tubes (and arches) are about the strongest shape structures we build

that does not mean they don't collapse

here is a section of very old section of the Dallas Rat Race it looks to me like its trying to pancake

http://www.uer.ca/...l.asp?picid=227924




Explorer Savant and winner of 2 UER Lifetime Achievement Awards

Wizbang 


Location: Milwaukee, WI
Gender: Male
Total Likes: 20 likes


Was, is, and will always be the king. RIP

 |  | 
Re: Underground Structural Integrity
< Reply # 4 on 6/11/2018 11:31 AM >
Reply with Quote
Posted on Forum: UER Forum
Posted by Aran
I've been reading up on my city's storm drain system, and I've found that apparently there are some pretty interesting brick drains I want to go looking for once we get a few days without rain here. Unfortunately, there is a slight potential issue with these drains.

The oldest drains in this city (the brick ones I want to find) were built over one hundred years years ago. According to a statement issued by a city utility manager, inspecting the storm drain pipes is not a priority. Reading between the lines, it is possible that some of these drains have not been inspected since their construction.

This by itself wouldn't be quite as worrying, except for the numerous sinkholes in the last five years caused by structural failures of the city's water utilities- including a sixteen foot deep sinkhole the size of a car that formed just last year when one of the brick storm drains collapsed. Considering my desire to find and explore these brick drains, it is a concern.

So, we've all heard about how to judge the structural integrity of an abandoned building, but how about the structural integrity of drains and tunnels? What are the signs of structural damage to a drain, and should I even be concerned at all?


I found some really interesting reports related to this topic. I say related, only because at a glance I did not see exactly what to look for, as it would apply to a drainer. But they all have some interesting stuff on planning and building.

Here are some links to USDOT reports:

http://onlinepubs....rp/docs/NCHRP20-07(276)_FR.pdf
https://www.fhwa.d.../tunnel_manual.pdf

And a story of rehabbing a 150 year-old brick drain in Canada:

https://www.canadi...hless-technologies

If you have a date/time set, shoot me a line. If it fits my schedule and you are interest in a fellow tunnel rat, I can be in Mad-town in 90min. Milwaukee doesn't have any brick drains that I know of, with the exception of the steam tunnels downtown still in use by WE Energies that seem impossible to get into.





[last edit 6/11/2018 11:34 AM by Wizbang - edited 2 times]

Give abandonment a reason for its sacrificial reclamation to nature. Love it. Remember it. Take a picture. Share it. Leave the decay to nature.
UER Forum > Rookie Forum > Underground Structural Integrity (Viewed 137 times)


Add a poll to this thread



This thread is in a public category, and can't be made private.



All content and images copyright 2002-2018 UER.CA and respective creators. Graphical Design by Crossfire.
To contact webmaster, or click to email with problems or other questions about this site: UER CONTACT
View Terms of Service | View Privacy Policy | Server colocation provided by Beanfield
This page was generated for you in 93 milliseconds. Since June 23, 2002, a total of 549660687 pages have been generated.