From sinkholes to saltwater intrusions that weaken concrete, there are many theories as to why Florida’s beachside condominium towers collapsed without warning.
The partially collapsed Champlain Towers South Building on the surfside is in the midst of a 40-year recertification process and requires detailed structural and electrical inspection.
A 2018 report by Morabito Consultants Engineering Company (same as 40 years of inspection) found that buildings requiring extensive repair, such as “serious structural damage” to concrete structural slabs under pool decks. Many issues have been identified.
“In the near future, if the waterproof replacement fails, the degree of concrete deterioration will increase exponentially,” said a report released late Friday, along with other documents, by surfside officials. The report added that this situation was a “serious error” dating back to the original construction of the building.
The report also revealed “rich cracks” and other defects in the concrete columns, beams and walls of the parking lot. Some of the damage was minor, but the other columns were exposed and the rebar was deteriorated.
It was not immediately clear from the documentation whether this issue or any other issue identified in the report had been addressed or played a role in the collapse of the building. The company’s president, Frank Moravito, didn’t immediately respond to an email asking for comment on Saturday.
In an interview on Friday, Surfside Mayor Charles Barkett said he wasn’t sure if the 40-year test had been completed, but said it could contain important clues.
“It should have been very easy,” Barckett said. “American buildings don’t just collapse like this. There’s a reason. We need to know what the reason is.”
The collapse of the 12-story tower has killed at least four people, left 159 missing as of Friday, how this happened, and whether other similar buildings are at risk. I had a lot of questions about.
Sandra McLady of Surfside Town Clark said in an email that details of the Champlan Tower recertification inspection will be released as soon as it is completed.
Miami-Dade Mayor Daniella Levine Cava said at a press conference on Friday that there was no evidence of crimes such as sinkholes (much more common in other parts of Florida) or bombs.
“At this point, we can say that they haven’t found any evidence of fraudulent play,” she said.
Beyond that, much focus is on seawater rising in South Florida and elsewhere due to climate change. Last year, Republican Governor Ron DeSantis signed a bill requiring developers to complete their research on sea level rise before launching a publicly funded project.
Like everyone else, the governor seeks an answer as soon as possible about the cause of the collapse.
“We need a definitive answer as to how this happened,” DeSantis said at a press conference. “It’s a really unique type of tragedy that half of the building collapses like that at midnight.”
Meanwhile, according to a survey released last year by an environmental professor at Florida International University, the land where the Champlan Tower is located is gradually sinking.
However, professor Simon Udwinsky warned against condemning the collapse at the cave expedition. The study used satellite data collected between 1993 and 1999 to investigate land subsidence in Norfolk, Virginia and Miami Beach.
In a video interview released by the university, Wdowinski said his research found many examples of the sinking Earth. Some led to cracks in the building — he called it “quite common” in Florida.
“In most cases, these buildings just move,” he said. “There is no catastrophic collapse as in the case of the surfside. It was very disappointing.”
Another theory is that saltwater ubiquitous in flood-exposed areas during so-called king tide events invades concrete supports, corroding internal rebar and weakening concrete.
Abi Aghayere, an engineering researcher at Drexel University, said determining whether there was such an exacerbation could be one of the keys to the collapse.
“Did the column fail on its own? This column has supported this load for 40 years, but why does it fail now?” Aghayere says that rebars rarely corrode without anyone noticing. I added that. “Concrete pops out and falls.”
Others have cited frequent floods in the lower parking lots of the building, including the possibility of water seeping down through the porous limestone where Barrier Island, including Surfside and Miami Beach, is located.
Surfside officials say roofing work was underway on the tower, which is currently collapsing, but downplays the possibility that the work was the cause. Barry Cohen, a lawyer who escaped from the crippled Champlan Towers building with his wife, said roof construction could be part of the “worst case” of the combined causes to destroy the structure. He said he had sex.
“They were doing new roofs, and I think the building was throbbing and throbbing all day long. They’ve been doing that for over a month,” Cohen said.
Another issue, cited by some, is the construction of nearby buildings that can cause vibrations that undermine the Champlain Tower. Cohen said he had previously expressed concern that the work could have caused cracks in the pavement of the pool deck.
The collapse has already been filed, and one hour after the collapse, lawyer Brad Sohn has filed a lawsuit against the Condominium Homeowners Association seeking damages for the negligence and other reasons of all residents of the tower. ..
The association claims that “normal care, safety measures and surveillance could have prevented the collapse of Champlan Towers South.”
The association’s lawyer, Ken Direktor, did not respond to an email requesting comment on Friday.
Freida Frisaro, Associated Press writer in Fort Lauderdale, Florida. Bernard Condon of New York contributed to this report.
There are many theories as to why Florida condo skyscrapers collapsed – NBC10 Philadelphia
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