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Beautiful Railway Bridge of the Silvery Tay: reinvestgating the Tay Bridge disaster of 1879 Paperback – November 1, 2004

4.3 out of 5 stars 3 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher

125 years ago, barely a year and a half after the Tay Railway Bridge was built, William McGonnagal composed his poem about the Tay Bridge Disaster, the worst poem about Britain’s worst–ever civil engineering disaster. Over eighty people lost their lives in the fall of the Tay Bridge, but how did it happen? The accident reports say that high wind and poor construction were to blame, but Peter Lewis, an Open University engineering professor, tells the real story of how the bridge so spectacularly collapsed in December 1879.

Dr. Peter Lewis is an Open University lecturer in engineering. He is the acknowledged expert on the Tay Bridge Disaster and regularly gives talks on its downfall.

About the Author

Lewis is an Open University senior lecturer in Engineering. He is an acknowledged expert on the Tay Bridge Disaster and regularly gives talks on its downfall.
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Product Details

  • Paperback: 192 pages
  • Publisher: Tempus Publishing/NMI Limited (November 1, 2004)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0752431609
  • ISBN-13: 978-0752431604
  • Product Dimensions: 6.8 x 0.5 x 9.7 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 14.7 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (3 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #3,952,158 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Top Customer Reviews

By PETER on January 24, 2013
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
Well written if a bit repetitive. Not sure his findings differed that much from the "inquiry", but a fascinating look into the adolesence of structural engineering. Good illustrations. A good book
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I purchased this book for an Advanced Materials Science course I was taking and I found that not only was it extremely useful for my paper but it was also a great read. This book goes through the events and gives quite a bit of detail on what happened and why. The book goes through transcripts from the inquiry after the disaster which I found interesting. The event was photographed pretty extensively and the author goes through the pictures and tells you what to look for and why.
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Much of the book deals, not with the disaster itself, but with the engineering errors and ramifications of same on bridges in Scotland. I found it to be very interesting but also heavy on technical explanations. Other books I have read have simply blamed the builder without really going into the why of it. This book deals with the building issues of the day and why this design was chosen instead of another which would have had more robustness. One must remember, however, that these bridge builders and designers were at the bleeding edge of bridge construction in an age of new materials, with a fairly primitive grasp of the structural stresses they would have to be dealing with. Not excusing the designer and builders, but just think about the fate of the Tacoma Narrows bridge many decades later. When you push the envelope, the envelope may very well push back.
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