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Condo Collapse Spurs Surfside Leaders To Look Into Missed Warnings

July 13, 2021
Colson Hicks Eidson

At the time of this writing, the death toll remains at 97 victims in the partial condo collapse of the Champlain Towers South building in Surfside, Florida. The collapse happened on June 24, and 95 victims have now been identified. First responders and search-and-rescue teams have undertaken the grueling process of finding and identifying victims among the wreckage.

The Miami structural collapse attorneys at Colson Hicks Eidson are here to help clients who have been injured in serious accidents. We know how to handle significant structural collapse cases that have resulted in deaths and serious injuries.

Missed Warnings

As the search continues in the rubble of the 12-story residential building, community leaders have pledged to get to the bottom of what happened and whether city officials and condominium board members ignored red flags over the years leading up to the building’s structural integrity failing.

There have been questions about city officials misleading the condo’s residents about engineering concerns raised in a 2018 report. The report acknowledged “significant structural damage” just five weeks before the collapse, but residents were promised they were safe by a former building official.

The Champlain Tower South condominium board was sued back in 2015 when nothing was done after a resident alerted them to cracks in her wall from water damage. The resident settled with the condo board on undisclosed terms.

Following the collapse, more lawsuits have been filed and will continue to be filed alleging the condominium association’s “failure to properly protect the lives and property” by disregarding the building’s structural issues.

Collapse Cleanup

This collapse should be a wake-up call to city officials and condominium board members in Florida about vital maintenance and repairing building flaws. The Champlain Tower South had just started to repair and replace the roof to address the issues listed in the 2018 engineering report.

As search groups and cleanup efforts end, law enforcement will preserve the scene and all related materials so the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) can investigate and examine the evidence.

NIST has already been deployed to the collapse site with Congressional authority to determine potential causes for the collapse. The factfinders at NIST will gather material samples and test them to understand which components failed regarding the integrity of the condo. The same agency also investigated the World Trade Center’s collapse.

Contacting An Attorney

People need to trust the quality of the buildings they live in. Skilled architects and contractors should be taking advantage of advanced building technology and improved materials to keep people safe and secure.

Corners still get cut, and builders, businesses, and building boards fail to follow certain codes and regulations. Unsound foundations and faulty construction wear down and structures fall, causing severe injuries and death.

If you or a loved one have been injured or sustained loss due to structural collapse, the Miami construction litigation attorneys at Colson Hicks Eidson have the experience and passion to represent the victims of these catastrophes. Contact us for a free consultation by clicking here or by calling us at 305-476-7400.