FORENSICS I'm pretty good at this one too. Projects fail. Sometimes it's design errors. A fellow named Kaminetsky wrote a book about engineering failures. Two of the projects I worked on as an engineer are in there, out of only 50 he covered: Wilton School '71 and Kapiolani On-Ramp '79. Must be a record? If I were a better engineer at the time I could have prevented them both.
And sometimes it's construction errors. I investigated one project where the contractor put all the reinforcing steel into a beam form - still bundled up the way it showed up on the truck! Shipping tag and all. Threw it into the bottom of the form and filled it up with wet concrete. He was "behind schedule". Retaining walls tip over ... I've done 20+ of those. Flooding is a constant headache. Sometimes it's inadequate design or construction, but frequently it's just dust. Built up over the years until it's four feet thick and has totally altered a working drainage pattern.
Here's a recent forensic study I did at Schoffield Barracks. A new six storey barracks was having severe diagonal cracks in the primary shear walls on the lower floors. Big ones and lots of them. Here's why: