SECTION PM-314  PIERS AND OTHER WATERFRONT STRUCTURES
PM-314.0 General. In order to confirm and maintain the structural integrity of their structures, the owners of piers, bulkheads, wharves, docks, and other structures that have structural elements partly or totally below water along the shorelines of the Delaware River, Schuylkill River, or estuaries shall inspect and submit a structural assessment report to the code official on a triennial basis with the first report due no later than January 1, 2003. Subsequent reports will be due every three years thereafter. The structural assessment report shall be subject to the provisions of Sections PM-314.1 through PM-314.7. 346
Exceptions:
   1.   The reporting requirement shall not apply to pipelines, bridges, dams, utility towers, tram towers, and water and wastewater discharge and intake structures.
   2.   The reporting requirement shall not apply to vacant piers and other waterfront structures provided:
      2.1   A barrier to human occupancy is maintained at all points of access from the on-shore side of the pier or other waterfront structure.
      2.2   The owner files an "Affidavit of Vacant Pier" with the code official.
      2.3   The owner maintains a vacant property license.
      2.4   The pier or other waterfront structure is posted on all sides, in a visible and conspicuous manner, with "Danger - No Trespassing" signs.
   3.   The reporting requirement shall not apply to bulkheads in Fairmount Park. 347
   4.   The reporting requirements shall not apply to bulkheads along public rights-of-way regulated by other entities. 348
PM-314.1 Minimum qualification of inspection personnel: The personnel involved in the inspection of piers and other waterfront structures shall possess the following qualifications:
   1.   Project engineer: A professional engineer registered in the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania shall be designated as the project engineer and shall prepare the structural assessment report. The project engineer shall have at least five years' experience in the field of marine structure construction and design techniques with specific verifiable knowledge of relieving platforms, high water structures, and cellular structure.
   2.   Team leader: All underwater inspections shall be led by and under the direction of a team leader who shall be a professional engineer registered in the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania. The team leader shall have at least three years' experience in the field of marine structure construction and design techniques. The team leader shall also be a qualified diver or shall use a video monitor to assess and record the divers' inspections.
   3.   Divers: Underwater inspections shall be performed by divers who are graduates of a commercial diving school. Divers shall have completed at least 80 hours of instruction specifically related to structural inspections or shall have at least six months verifiable wharf builder experience in the Delaware bay, river, or estuary.
PM-314.2 Inspections: The inspections required by this Section shall be classified as follows:
   1.   Routine inspections: Routine inspections shall be performed and a structural assessment report prepared at least once every three years as set forth in Section PM-314.0. The inspections shall include:
      1.1   Topside inspections: Topside inspection of the above-water portions of the pier or other waterfront structure.
      1.2   Underwater inspections: Underwater inspection by personnel qualified to perform such inspections, of those portions of the pier or other waterfront structure that cannot be inspected above water.
   2.   Post-event inspection: A post-event inspection shall be performed, and a structural assessment report submitted, following a damage-causing event such as impact by vessel, major flood, ice flow, or similar event.
   PM-314.2.1. Previous inspections: Prior to performing a routine or post-event inspection of a pier or waterfront structure, the Project Engineer shall review previous reports, inspections, and evidence of repairs made in the past three (3) year period, including confirmation that all areas previously determined to require remediation in less than three (3) years (as noted in any previous report) have been addressed. The results shall be included in the structural assessment report. 349
PM-314.3 Structural assessment rating: 350 A rating system conforming to the following criteria shall be used in the structural assessment report to describe the overall condition of the pier or other waterfront structure:
   1.   Safe - No visible damage or only minor to moderate defects or deterioration observed, but no overstressing observed. Structural elements may show very minor deterioration, but no overstressing observed. No repairs are required.
   2.   Safe with a Repair and Maintenance Program - All primary structural elements are sound but minor to moderate defects or deterioration observed. Areas of moderate to advanced deterioration may be present but do not significantly reduce the load-bearing capacity of the structure. Repairs are recommended and may need to be carried out with moderate urgency.
   3.   Unsafe - Advanced deterioration, overstressing, or breakage may have significantly affected the load- bearing capacity of primary structural components. Local failures are possible and loading restrictions may be necessary. Repairs may need to be carried out on a high-priority basis. The structure, or a portion thereof, must be posted with maximum permitted live load certificate(s) and the use restricted or portions barricaded until repairs are completed. Where widespread failure is possible, all occupancy must cease immediately and the structure barricaded and posted. The pier or other waterfront structure, or a portion thereof, must remain closed until repairs are completed and the structure deemed Safe.
PM-314.4 Structural assessment report: Structural assessment reports shall be sealed by the project engineer. Each report shall consist of the following sections:
   1.   Introduction - The introduction to the report shall include:
      1.1   Description of the facility including use (function) and loading conditions.
      1.2   Scope of work including any limitations affecting inspections dictated by the owner or site conditions.
      1.3   Description of the inspection including equipment, test methods date, time, weather, stage of tide, and the names and qualifications of the survey party.
   2.   Existing conditions - The existing conditions section of the report shall include the following. Data and results shall be documented by drawings/sketches and pictures and shall be reported in a factual manner without comment or analysis.
      2.1   Results of topside and underwater inspections.
      2.2   Special testing accomplished in the field.
      2.3   Results of laboratory testing.
   3.   Evaluation - Evaluate the structure based upon the existing conditions, previous inspections, current use (function), and loading conditions. The overall structural assessment rating pursuant to Section PM-314.3 shall be included in this Section. 351
   4.   Recommendations - The report shall contain:
      4.1   Recommendations for repairs or replacement including any temporary measures that must be taken before completion of the repairs. 352
      4.2   Restrictions of use, and required posting(s) of live load certificate(s).
   PM-314.4.1 Summary report. 353 The Project Engineer shall also submit a summary of the written report to the code official in a form determined by the code official. The code official may by regulation impose a processing fee, not to exceed one hundred dollars ($100), that must be paid upon submission of the summary of the written report.
   PM-314.4.2 Submission period. 354 Structural assessment reports and summary reports shall be submitted to the code official within sixty days of physical inspection.
PM-314.5 Unsafe Conditions. 355
   1.   Upon discovery of any Unsafe condition, the Project Engineer shall immediately notify the owner of the pier or other waterfront structure by electronic mail or by fax; and shall, within 12 hours of discovery, notify the code official in writing in an electronic format determined by the code official.
   2.   Within twenty-four (24) hours of being notified of an Unsafe condition by a Project Engineer, the owner of a pier or other waterfront structure shall take any actions necessary as recommended by the Project Engineer to protect public safety, such as posting, restricting occupancy or closing the structure.
   3.   The owner shall designate a professional engineer to develop a remediation plan, detailing the extent of the required repairs and temporary measures to ensure public safety. The engineer shall provide periodic structural observations prior to the remediation work and throughout the repair process as required by the Building Code and shall inform the Department if oversight responsibilities are terminated by the owner.
   4.   Within ten (10) days of the issuance of a building permit to repair an Unsafe condition, the owner of a pier or other waterfront structure shall commence work to correct the condition and work shall continue without interruption until the Unsafe condition has been corrected.
   5.   Upon completion of the repairs, the designated professional engineer shall reinspect the structure and submit a sealed statement to the Department that the structure has been made Safe.
   PM-314.5.1 Posting and restricted occupancy: Where an Unsafe condition is reported, the following actions shall be taken based upon the recommendations of the Project Engineer, as detailed in the structural assessment report:
      1.   Post Maximum Permitted Live Load Certification - Live load certification signs, approved by the code official, shall be conspicuously posted.
      2.   Barriers - Install barriers and post approved signage to prevent access to specific areas identified by the Project Engineer.
      3.   Restrict Occupancy - Immediately cease operation of any pier or other waterfront structure, or portion thereof, determined by the Project Engineer to be in unsafe condition. Post "Danger - No Trespassing" signs on all sides including the on-shore and out-shore sides. Install a barrier to prevent access to the pier or other waterfront structure, or portion thereof, from all points of access.
PM-314.6 Conditions That Are Safe with a Repair and Maintenance Program: 356 The owner of the pier or waterfront structure is responsible for ensuring that the conditions described in the report as Safe with a Repair and Maintenance Program are repaired and the actions identified by the Project Engineer are completed within the time frame designated by the Project Engineer or by such time necessary to prevent a condition from becoming an Unsafe condition, whichever is sooner.
PM-314.7 Appeals: 357 The owner of the pier or other waterfront structure may appeal the findings set forth in the Project Engineer's report to the Board of Building Standards. Such appeal must be filed within thirty (30) days of the receipt or filing of the report, and a second Project Engineer's report shall be submitted within thirty (30) days of filing the appeal. The filing and pendency of such an appeal shall stay the requirement for making repairs as set forth in Section PM-314.5, but not the requirement for taking actions necessary to protect public safety as set forth in Section PM-314.5.1.
   1.   Upon consideration of any such appeal, the Board shall issue a recommendation to the Commissioner either to grant the appeal; deny the appeal; or grant the appeal with such proposed modifications to the Project Engineer's findings as the Board deems consistent with the intent of this Section. The Commissioner thereafter shall make the final determination on the appeal.
   2.   The owner of the pier or other waterfront structure may appeal the determination of the Commissioner to the Board of License and Inspection Review, pursuant to the procedures set forth in Section A-803.1 of The Administrative Code.

 

Notes

346
   Amended, Bill No. 180746 (approved January 3, 2019).
347
   Added, Bill No. 180746 (approved January 3, 2019).
348
   Added, Bill No. 180746 (approved January 3, 2019).
349
   Added, Bill No. 180746 (approved January 3, 2019).
350
   Amended, Bill No. 180746 (approved January 3, 2019).
351
   Amended, Bill No. 180746 (approved January 3, 2019).
352
   Amended, Bill No. 180746 (approved January 3, 2019).
353
   Added, Bill No. 180746 (approved January 3, 2019).
354
   Added, Bill No. 180746 (approved January 3, 2019).
355
   Amended, Bill No. 180746 (approved January 3, 2019).
356
   Amended, Bill No. 180746 (approved January 3, 2019).
357
   Added, Bill No. 180746 (approved January 3, 2019).