ELR-053 Ethics Case Study: St Francis Dam Failure: 2 PDH

ELR-053 Ethics Case Study St Francis Dam Failure

Description of the Ethics Case Study: St. Francis Dam Failure

The Ethics Case Study: St. Francis Dam Failure online PDH course is a part of the Ethics, Laws and Rules category of courses. This course will examine the ethical issues that arose from the 1928 failure of the St. Francis Dam near Los Angeles, California.  Near midnight on March 12 of that year the 195-feet high concrete arch dam collapsed catastrophically, releasing 12 billion gallons of flood waters downstream in a flood wave that reached a depth of 140 feet with average velocities estimated at 26 feet per second.  By 5:30 AM on March 13 flood waters nearly two miles wide reached the Pacific Ocean near Ventura, California.  The flood killed more than 450 people and was the worst civil engineering failure in U.S. history.  In this course you will learn about the political and economic forces behind the project, the people who controlled the project, the ethical issues that were raised by the tragedy, and lessons the engineering profession learned from the tragedy.

This course will give engineers and others an ethical framework within which to address many complex engineering projects that challenge the limits of engineering theoretical knowledge and experience.

This course is intended for engineers, architects and other design and construction professionals wanting to learn about the ethical issues that were raised by the failure of the St. Francis Dam, and lessons that have been learned from the incident.  Although this was a civil engineering incident, the ethical issues and lessons apply to all engineering disciplines.

Learning Objectives

Upon completion of this course, you will:

  • Learn about the history of the project and the economic and political issues that shaped its development.
  • Learn about the dam’s relation to the controversial Los Angeles Aqueduct.
  • Learn about the well known public agency manager who controlled the project.
  • Learn about the indications of trouble that were inspected before the failure but ignored.
  • Learn about the dam break flows and velocities that resulted from the collapse.
  • Learn about soil conditions at the site that should have been investigated and accommodated in the design.
  • Learn about the dam height increases during construction that were not properly accommodated in the design.
  • Learn about the ethical issues that were raised by the failure of the dam.
  • Learn about the public agency manager’s engineering qualifications that raised ethical questions.
  • Learn about the importance of professional training in avoiding similar incidents in the future.

Refunds and Cancellation Policies

The course is accepted by the Professional Engineering boards in states listed on this page. In an unlikely case the course is not accepted by the board listed on this page, we will refund the full payment and will pay for you to take another course of equivalent monetary and PDH / CEU value. For complete list of courses related to Ethics, Laws and Rules category of courses please click here.

Length of the Course / Activity

This course is intended to be studied at self-pace and it should take on average of 2 hour to read and be able to comprehend the material to successfully past the online quiz

Course Quiz

To receive the certificate of completion for the above 2 PDH online course, you will need to take a 15 question multiple choice quiz based on the reference material supplied and pass with minimum score of 70%. There is no time limit for the quiz and it can be taken multiple times until a passing score of 70% is achieved

Certificate of Completion

Once you achieve a passing score of 70% on the quiz you will receive and be able to print your Certificate of Completion as a record of your continuing education. PDH Star will keep a record of your certificate for the duration as required by your state of licensure. You will be able to log on to your account and view and print your past Certificate of Completion

State Acceptance

This course is accepted in all states mandating continuing education:

AK, AL, AR, DE, FL, GA, IA, ID, IL, IN, KS, KY, LA, MD, ME, MI, MN, MO, MS, MT, NC, ND, NE, NH, NJ, NM, NV, NY, OH, OK, OR, PA, SC, SD, TN, TX, UT, VA, VT, WI, WV, and WY

For detailed state by state requirements click here

Need help?

Do you need help choosing the right course or package for you? Please give us a call or send us an email and we will be happy to provide guidance on which courses are most relevant for you and create a customary course package


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