Although residential builders don’t often deal with life-or-death situations, the recent deadly balcony collapse in California brought home the serious consequences of ignoring construction safety.
Six people were killed and eight others injured when a balcony on the Library Gardens Apartment Complex in Berkeley came loose from the exterior wall and gave way. Even though it had more than a dozen people on it at the time, overloading was not the cause of the failure, a local structural engineer told the Los Angeles Times.
“It appears to be a classic case of dry rot, meaning water intruded into the building [and] rotted the wood” that supported the balcony, said Gene St. Onge. “But if the [wooden supports] were designed even under minimal standards, it should still have held.”
As this story points out, construction failures, water intrusion, or just plain shoddy workmanship can lead to life-threatening issues. Thankfully these situations don’t happen often but when they do, they make headlines. Click through for a few of the more notable building failures of the past few years.