California Engineer Acclaimed for Bridge Achievements Dies at 62

BY 
January 3, 2019

Peter Nikolay Soin, a longtime California Department of Transportation engineer whose projects included studying the collapsed segment of the San Francisco–Oakland Bay Bridge after the 1989 Loma Prieta earthquake, has died at 62.

Soin, P.E., M.ASCE, worked for Caltrans since 1983. With a reputation for always going beyond what was expected, he was promoted several times over the years.

His post-analysis of the Bay Bridge led to being named associate bridge engineer with the Office of Structures Construction, where he helped to seismically retrofit the bridge. Soin was the engineer of record on many projects.

His passion for structural engineering was evident from the start of his career with his work in load ratings and a proficiency in software as the technology developed and grew. In the early 1990s, Soin used a proprietary program called CRVBRG (Curved Bridge) to analyze open steel girder use for curve-shaped bridges so they could comply with highway geometry.

Further bridge work included the massive Dumbarton Bridge seismic retrofit and, in 2016, the Sarco Creek Bridge, northeast of downtown Napa.

Soin served as treasurer of the Professional Engineers in California Government union. In 2008, he received Caltrans’ 25-Year Service Award.

In Soin’s memory, his considerable collection of engineering books has been donated to the Caltrans HQ Library and Technical Reference Center.

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