NSC Archives


President’s Column: January 2019

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I’ve written before about the benefits that accrue to clients, main contractors and specifiers from using a BCSA member for their structural steelwork. This is due to BCSA’s membership assessments which cover competence, capability and recommended contract size, but also because BCSA members are always up-to-date with the latest regulatory requirements and best practice, and have member-only access to a wide range of education and training.

Structural engineers and architects have their own professional bodies to support their education and professional development, but many of them also benefit from the wide-ranging role that BCSA and its sister organisation Steel for Life play in keeping them knowledgeable about structural steelwork.

BCSA owns and keeps up-to-date the National Structural Steelwork Specification (NSSS), which is used across the UK and Ireland for the specification of structural steelwork. Without it, the specification of steelwork would be considerably more difficult, as well as much more variable. The NSSS also reduces tender risk because it is so well understood across the sector. The NSSS is updated regularly, when required, and provided at a subsidised cost to specifiers.

Engineers will be very familiar with the SCI / BCSA Eurocodes steel design guides. These key documents provide detailed guidance to engineers on designing to the Eurocodes and were funded by BCSA and Tata Steel. As issues are brought to the attention of BCSA’s main technical committee, it commissions research and design guidance, all aimed at structural engineers and architects. One recent example is the guidance on steel connections to concrete cores. Again, all design guides are provided at subsidised prices to specifiers.

And what about this magazine which is circulated to 12,000 readers 10 times a year and consistently publishes useful information and interesting case studies for its readers? Or the website that provides detailed, up-to-date information on steel construction for engineers and architects? Both are managed and funded by Steel for Life, BCSA’s market development arm.

Steel for Life is funded by BCSA and a number of its Industry Members. These companies are showing a huge commitment to best practice in the structural steelwork sector – have a look on the page 5 of this magazine to see who they are.

Steel for Life has bold ambitions for this year and beyond. It will be running more seminars for engineers and architects to provide them with face-to-face information and education on steel design. It will of course, continue to publish NSC magazine, support the website, maintain the vital Blue Book and provide quarterly updates on the all-important cost of structural steelwork.

Tim Outteridge
BCSA President & Sales Director Cleveland Bridge

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