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Do we need to use Eurocodes Codes ?

Do Malaysian Engineers need to use Eurocodes in Designs of Civil & Structural Engineering Works?

After year 2010, all EU Countries including United Kindgom will be using Structural Eurocodes, which is a Unified Code for the design of all Civil & Structural engineering works in those countries, similar to the Euro Dollar concept. These Codes comprise an extensive suite of 58 parts and sub-parts. These are  most comprehensive and advanced sets of Codes and Standards ever compiled and in existence today.

The UK is phasing out the use of British Standards and Codes of practice and will thus implement the Eurocodes by year 2010.

Despite the technical and cultural differences between countries, systems and peoples, it was found that engineers could adapt easily  to the new standards and should have no problem in their use.

For many Civil & Structural Engineers outside the EU Countries, and particularly those graduated before year 2010 for UK or Malaysian Universities, the need to change and adopt to Enrocode depends very much on personal, company you worked for and the government regulatory bodies.

For Malaysian Experienced Engineers many had been using BS449, BS 5950 for Steelworks and CP110, BS 8110 for Reinforced & Prestressed Concrete,  successfully over the years. These would include the use of software based on these older codes.

Inorder to use the Eurocodes you will have to invest more time and effort to read and understand the codes  and then apply them correctly with modifications to suit Malaysian climate and conditions. You would also need to upgrade your software and any calculation methods and procedures you had developed over the years.

On the other hand, there is perfect sense to continue your use of the Standards & Codes which you are most familiar with as in a commercial environment, familiarity for speed of works is critical and that itself is economy. Furthermore, the Malaysian Government will not change the building codes soon, and in fact it will be many years before the Eurocodes will be specified in the building codes and bylaws. A most probably situation will be the acceptance of all codes, British Standards from BS449 to BS5950 and CP110 to BS8110 and also all relevant Eurocodes such as EN 1992 Eurocode 2 - Concrete Design. Unfortunately Malaysians do not have a Malaysian Standards & Codes for Civil & Structural Works and even if we have these, they are modeled based on the older British Standards & Codes.

There is an argument that the Structural Eurocodes has greater economy in design, however, conditions in Malaysia and similar tropical climate would not necessarily provide better economy compared to the use of older BS Standards and Codes of Practices.

However, there is no question that Malaysia or other Commonwealth Countries such as Singapore, India, Philippines, Australia, etc, in the near future will adopt the Eurocode Standards with some modifications to suit the local conditions, such as climate, earthquakes, etc. This will be particularly true as younger engineering graduates are being schooled in Eurocodes standards in United Kingdom and Local Universities. With the mobility of today’s employment market, younger engineers will have to find work anywhere and being conversant with the new Eurocodes will put them in better positions around the world.

In conclusion, unless you are designing or intend to do so for works in EU Countries, it is better and simpler for older & experienced engineers to continue the use of whatever standards and codes of practice you are most familiar with. For younger graduates however, the Eurocodes are the way for the future. Having said that, should you have the time, keeping updated, on practices in the Eurocodes would enhance your technical capabilities all the same, to be on par with your associates and the international professionals.

For those interested to in Design of Civil & Structural Works in Eurocodes extensive book references & Eurocode Standards are available

Lists of Eurocode Standards

The comprehensive list of Eurocodes for Engineering are as listed below. These need to be read based on each Country's National Annexes. If your country does not have the National Annexes, then you can adopt the UK National Annexes, similar to British Standards.

Eurocode 0: Basis of Structural Design

Eurocode 1: Actions on Structures

-General actions. Densities, self-weight, imposed loads for buildings, fire, snow, wind, thermal, execution, accidental loads, Traffic loads on Bridges, Actions induced by cranes and machines, Silos & Tanks

Eurocode 2: Design of Concrete Structures.

-General rules and rules for buildings, Structural Fire design, Concrete Bridges design & detailingg rules, Liquid Retaining & Containing Structures

Eurocode 3. Design of Steel Structures.

General rules and rules for buildings, Structural fire design, Supplementary rules for cold-formed members and sheeting, stainless steels, Plated Structural Elements, Strength and Stability of Shell Structures, Design of joints, Fatigue, Material toughness and through-thickness properties, Design of structures with tension components, Additional rules for the extension of EN 1993 up to steel grades S700, Steel Bridges, Towers, masts and chimneys. Towers and masts & Chimneys, Silos, Tanks, Pipelines, Piling, Crane Supporting Structures.

Eurocode 4. Design of composite steel and concrete structures.

General rules and rules for buildings, Structural fire design, rules for bridges.

Eurocode 5. Design of Timber Structures.

General. Common rules and rules for buildings, structural design flow chart, structural fire design, Timber Bridges.

Eurocode 6. Design of Masonry Structures.

Design considerations,General rules for reinforced and unreinforced masonry. structures, fire  selection of materials and execution of masonry; Simplified Calculation Methods for unreinforced masonry structures.

Eurocode 7. Geotechnical Design.

General rules, Ground Investigations & Testing.

Eurocode 8. Design of Structures for Earthquake Resistance.

General rules, seismic actions and rules for buildings, Bridges, Silos, Tanks, Pipelines, Foundations, Retaining Structures & Geotechnical Aspects, Towers, Masts & Chimneys.

Eurocode 9. Design of Aluminium Structures.

General structural rules, fire, fatigue, Cold-Formed structural sheets, shell structures


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Authur- Philip Goh (B.Sc, MIEM, P.Eng. MICE, C.Eng)
MEC Engineers, Civil & Structural Engineer






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Authur- Philip Goh (B.Sc, MIEM, P.Eng. MICE, C.Eng) MEC Engineers, Civil & Structural Engineer HP: 016-8672189, Email: Widget: email cloaker