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Thread: When to require stamped drawings by a P.E.?

  1. #1
    Cyburbian hilldweller's avatar
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    Jan 2005
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    Land of Confusion
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    When to require stamped drawings by a P.E.?

    Our office recently rejected a site plan submittal for a new project because the plans were not signed/sealed by a professional engineer (P.E.). The plans include civil engineering designs for grading, drainage, paving and new retaining walls. In speaking with the engineer he claimed he was uncomfortable stamping plans at this stage since they were only preliminary and not for construction, he was concerned about liability, etc. (I've never heard this before, it seems like 99% of the time a P.E. will stamp anything; frankly I'm now wondering if this guy has a license). Our engineering staff are reluctant to review these plans without a stamp, hence we're now scuffling with the applicant. The state regulations are unclear as to when stamped plans are required other than prior to construction/permitting.

    Anyone deal with a similar situation? Is this typically something left to the discretion of the municipality or spelled out in state statutes? Thanks in advance.

  2. #2
    Cyburbian
    Registered
    Jul 2006
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    Suburban Chicago
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    We only require PE stamps or architect stamps on plans submitted after the Planning review process. Our codes only require stamps on on building permits sets. We always do a review of the stamped sets in planning to make sure that all the site plan elements that were approved are on the plans (and not changed).

    In my last fair city, we required stamped architectural and stamped engineering sets during the planning review phase. However, this community didn't have the involvement and fiddling with the plans during the plan review phase that this community has.

  3. #3
    Cyburbian
    Registered
    Aug 2008
    Location
    Jacksonville, FL
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    77
    The engineer's fear is understandable, but as a compromise perhaps he/she can have the plans "stamped" with "Not for Construction - Preliminary Plans Only" to make it clear the plans are not construction documents. Engineers in my firm will often have a block added to preliminary plans within the AutoCAD drawings themselves, but I have also worked with older engineers who literally had a big rubber stamp that they inked red and affixed the same wording to every sheet.

    To answer your question, though, in dealing with a variety of Florida municipalities submitting plans for review, I have found that every city and county has a different policy for when plans must be signed and sealed by a registered P.E. You might have the same situation in your state. Also, sometimes the board that regulates the profession itself may have requirements about signing and sealing plans, calculations, etc.

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