Monday, May 13, 2013

Monday Must Reads: Badly Designed Bolts in New Bridge Tower, Too; Frazier Was Going to Seek Jordan’s Ouster

By Robert Gammon
Mon, May 13, 2013 at 6:53 AM

Stories you shouldn’t miss:

1. The signature tower of the new Bay Bridge contains more than four hundred giant steel bolts that may be inferior to the 32 rods that have already snapped, SF Gate reports. The 400-plus bolts in the tower had been dipped in hydrochloric acid even though doing so violated industry standards. The acid can make steel more brittle and susceptible to failure, but instructions from Caltrans to forgo the acid baths apparently never made it to the Alabama manufacturer of the rods. It’s too late to replace the rods, however, because they’re no longer accessible in the tower. If the giant bolts break during an earthquake, it could be catastrophic.

Thomas Frazier
  • Thomas Frazier
2. OPD’s compliance director, Thomas Frazier, was planning to seek the ouster of Police Chief Howard Jordan before Jordan abruptly retired, citing a medical condition, the Trib reports, citing anonymous sources. Sources told the Trib that Frazier had told Jordan, Mayor Jean Quan, and City Administrator Deanna Santana of his plans to ask federal Judge Thelton Henderson to fire Jordan. Frazier had been highly critical of OPD command staff for its failure to properly investigate police misconduct and hold problem officers accountable.

3. The amount of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere passed a historic milestone last week, topping 400 parts per million, the highest in 2.5 million years. But Congress appears unlikely to pass climate change legislation anytime soon, Politico reports.

4. A new study on climate change, meanwhile, found that common animals and plants will be widely impacted by global warming in the coming decades, the LA Times$ reports. The new study predicted that plants, reptiles, and amphibians will be most harmed by rising global temperatures.

5. And the North Bay city Sebastopol became the second in the state to require new home construction to include solar panels in an effort to curb greenhouse gases, the Santa Rosa Press Democrat reports. The City of Lancaster in Southern California was the first to enact such a law. However, Sebastopol went one step further and also required new commercial buildings and major remodels to include solar panels as well.

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