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Abstract: The IEEE Institute On-line recently printed the case of Mats Järlström, a Swedish EE living in Oregon but not licensed as a Professional Engineer. When he attempted to present calculations that prove that the yellow lights on traffic signals were improperly timed, he was charged and fined for practicing engineering without a license. The full story in The Institute and comments on the story may be read at: http://theinstitute.ieee.org/ieee-roundup/blogs/blog/does-having-a-license-make-you-an-engineer
This story opens the questions of:
- What is engineering practice and what is mere opinion?
- Does the Engineering Practice Act forbid any unlicensed engineer such as an experienced technician from stating a personal opinion?
- Does the Engineering Practice Act forbid any citizen without engineering experience from stating any opinion?
- Did Mats Järlström violate the Texas Engineering Practice Act (had he lived here) by stating his opinion?
- Given the same circumstances as we understand them, how would the Texas P.E. Board have handled Mats Järlström?
- Could Mats Järlström or any unlicensed engineer present any evidence of a mistake or error without violating the Engineering Practice Act?
- Were Mats Järlström licensed, could he still give a traffic signal timing opinion without being an experienced Transportation Engineer?
This story should excite serious reflection and concern by EE's living in Texas, especially those who are not P.E.'s but may want to contest a traffic ticket or merely comment on an issue or a problem. Texas P.E.'s are aware of the Texas Engineering Practice Act and Rules, but this is also an area of nuances and interpretation. (PI)² will have Mr. David Daigle, P.E., the Director of Compliance and Enforcement for the Texas Board of Professional Engineers at its July technical meeting. (See however it is that we are listed in this issue). He will present the usual P.E. Board Ethics, but will make time to answer the above questions and any others about the Mats Järlström case. This meeting is not restricted to P.E.'s, non-P.E.'s are also welcomed to attend.
Speaker: Mr. Dave Daigle, Director of Compliance & Enforcement, Texas Board of Professional Engineers
Mr. Daigle joined the Texas Board of Professional Engineers in August 2016 as Director of the Compliance & Enforcement Division. As the Director, Mr. Daigle manages the day-to- day operations of the division to include policy advisory opinions, compliance reviews of continuing education audits, seal imprint approvals, investigations of enforcement cases against violators, and providing outreach programs to educate the public and licensed engineers on engineering matters pertaining to the Board and the Engineering Practice Act. Mr. Daigle is a licensed professional engineer in the state of Texas.
Before joining the State of Texas, he served in the U.S. Navy from July 1991 until he retired in 2016. During his military service, he achieved the enlisted rank of Chief Petty Officer in 1999 while serving as an Electronics Technician for the Naval Nuclear Propulsion Program. He was selected to attend Old Dominion University in 2000 where he earned his Bachelor of Science in Mechanical Engineering and a Masters in Engineering Management. He is also achieved certification as a Naval Nuclear Engineer. As a Naval Officer he achieved the rank of Lieutenant Commander and served as the Engineer on the nuclear submarine USS Alaska and for the Submarine Squadron Twenty.
Mr. Daigle has been awarded the Defense Meritorious Service Medal, Meritorious Service Medal, Navy Commendation Medal (four awards), the Navy Achievement Medal (five awards), andserved on teams that have earned the Meritorious Unit Commendation (two awards) and Battle Efficiency “E” (three awards). While the Engineer on the Alaska, her Engineering Department was awarded the Engineering “E” for Excellence from the Commander of Submarine Squadron Twenty.
Dave and his wife Erika reside in Austin and have four grown children.