Characteristic values of actions

The characteristic value of an action is defined by one of the following three alternatives:

■ Its mean value - generally used for permanent actions.

■ An upper value with an intended probability of not being exceeded or lower value with an intended probability of being achieved - normally used for variable actions with known statistical distributions, such as wind or snow.

■ A nominal value - used for some variable and accidental actions.

The values of actions given in the various parts of BS EN 1991 : Actions on structures'141 are taken as characteristic values.

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