One of the most important professions in the world is the engineering profession. Engineers provide a multitude of services including the construction of roads and infrastructure, the manufacture of electronic devices, the design of efficient power plants, and most things that are manufactured. The importance of their contributions to society makes it especially crucial for all engineers to be held within a framework of professional ethics which seeks to make sure all engineers do their work and represent the profession with honesty and integrity.
In Texas, there are ethical guidelines, also known as standards, which all engineers are expected to adhere to in order to uphold the integrity of the engineering profession and keep it in good standing with the public. The key aims of this professional conduct are to:
- Ensure that the health and safety of our society is closely protected at all times
- Make sure that the work rendered by the engineers is only work related to their areas of expertise in the engineering profession
- Make sure all analysis and statement made by engineers are honest and true
- To make every engineer trustworthy in the critical eye of their clients in Texas
- Limit the engineers to conduct themselves properly in an ethical and moral sense.
While this is the key aim of having a professional code for engineers, professional ethics for engineers in Texas touches several other aspects such as rules of practice and professional obligations. The rules of practice broaden the scope of the aims of the professional ethics highlighting the standards which need to be kept. We shall consider some of these in the following sections.
ENSURING THE SAFETY OF THE PUBLIC AT ALL TIMES
To ensure the safety of members of the public, every engineer’s decisions should hold paramount protecting the safety and lives of society. If an engineer’s decisions fall short of this standard, they will lose credibility and trust, which are the cornerstones upon which the engineering profession are built. It also empowers engineers to report the violation of this rule by other engineers to the necessary authorities. This is to fully ensure these rules are maintained and complied with.
WORKING ONLY IN AREAS OF EXPERTISE
Engineers are allowed only to work in areas where they have direct experience and demonstrable competence. This, therefore, means that engineers are not allowed to accept assignment for projects in areas where they have little or no training in. This restriction ensures that the lives of people are protected and the standard of the engineering body is maintained.
The professional obligations of the engineers in Texas require them to;
- To do the work assigned to them with utmost honesty and integrity. This would mean that when at fault, engineers should accept they are wrong and try to remedy the situation. It also could mean that engineers should not try to protect their interest at the expense of the general public by accepting jobs which they are not fully prepared for.
- This means, therefore, that the engineer’s primary goal is to protect the interests of the public. This is one of the main obligations which the engineer have. This prohibits any engineer from accepting a job which he knows would cause harm and be detrimental to the public for many reasons.
The professional ethics governing engineers in Texas is there for a reason and this standard guides and protects the citizens of Texas from unnecessary harm.