Public Engineers: Accountability Without Liability

by Edward J. Rhomberg, (M.ASCE), Prof. of Civ. Engrg.; Texas A&M Univ., College Station, Tex.,
Gary W. Hein, (M.ASCE), LCDR, CEC, USN, and Grad. Student; Texas A&M Univ., College Station, Tex.,

Serial Information: Issues in Engineering: Journal of Professional Activities, 1980, Vol. 106, Issue 4, Pg. 345-348

Document Type: Journal Paper


The laws and rules that govern the responsibilities of engineers continue to undergo change, but engineers are still held responsible for their work. A review is made of the grounds on which these responsibilities are based. Special attention is given to the particular vulnerability of engineers in the private sector. The defenses and protections against suits for professional liability are reviewed. A proposal to eliminate the liability of public engineers but still hold them accountable, and still satisfy the interests of society, is examined.

Subject Headings: Liability | Laws | Private sector

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