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CROSS Topic Paper

Nicoll Highway collapse

Region: CROSS-UK Published: 1 June 2004


The collapse occurred in 2004 as a consequence of the failure of a 33m deep excavation adjacent to Nicoll Highway in Singapore.

The collapse occurred as a result of two primary errors: the under-estimation of the soil loads applied to the diaphragm wall and the under-design by a factor of 2 of the waler/strut connection at one level, and the inability of the overall system to redistribute loads after its failure.

Note: this Topic Paper was published by SCOSS (Standing Committee on Structural Safety). Since March 2021, SCOSS is integrated under the name Collaborative Reporting for Safer Structures (CROSS).

Who should read this?

Temporary works engineers, civil and structural engineers, design reviewers, Principal Contractors, groundworks contractors.

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