For updated global info & data on COVID-19, please click HERE.For updated global data & graphs on COVID-19, please click HERE.For COVID-19 cases and death counts in USA by state, please click HERE.For COVID-19 cases in Florida via Florida COVID Action, please click HERE.For COVID-19 cases in Florida, via Florida state government, please click HERE.Many of our readers have been contacting me to find out more about the cause of the collapse of Surfside Champlain Towers South building North of Miami Beach, Florida. So allow me to share what Windermere Sun has discovered, below:
Newly released records suggest serious structural concerns at Champlain Towers South three years ago that were just beginning to be addressed, in the video published on June 27, 2021, “Structural engineer Rick Slider discusses Surfside building collapse on TWISF“, below:
CNN’s Michael Smerconish speaks to structural engineer Matthys Levy about the deadly condo collapse in Surfside, Florida, and the structural field survey report from nearly three years ago that raised concerns about structural damage to the concrete slab below the pool deck. The report from October 2018 was included in a series of public records documents that were published overnight on the Surfside town website, in the video published on June 27, 2021, “Structural engineer explains what he saw in condo collapse footage“, below:
The collapse of the Champlain Towers South condo building raises a host of legal issues, in the video published on June 27, 2021, “Attorney David Haber discusses legal issues stemming from Surfside building collapse on TWISF“, below:
There are many contributing factors to damage to any building. Besides the salt spalling, in this case, according to Florida International University researcher who analyzed publicly available European Remote-Sensing Satellite data, the building had been sinking since 1990’s at about 2mm/year, as indicated in wikipedia page quoted in the post: Surfside Condominium Building At North Of Miami Beach, Florida, Partially Collapsed. Just because a building is sinking or had shown sign of salt spalling does not guarantee its collapse if the building had been properly maintained/repaired at a timely fashion. For example: Leaning Tower of Pisa (construction took place between 12th and 14th century) did not fall despite its deficiency in the original design (construction on soft ground which could not properly support structure’s weight) and started to lean since 12th century and reached about 5.5 degrees by 1990s. Leaning Tower of Pisa was stabilized by remedial work between 1993 and 2001, which reduced the tilt to 3.97 degrees. So, if remedial work was done in a timely fashion for the Champlain Towers South of Miami Beach, FL back in 2018 or 2019, the collapse on June 24, 2021, may not have occurred.
Case in point, in a more modern example, just a decade ago, a condo was on the verge of collapsing in the Tampa Bay area. Structural engineers found cracks on the 4th floor of Sarasota’s Dolphin Tower Condominium, now known as The 101 Condominium. “One would not think that you’d run into this and a building is a little more than 30-years-old,” said a neighbor who was told to evacuate and avoided the human tragedy of the Surfside Champlain Towers South, in the video published on June 29, 2021, “Structural engineering firm avoided condo collapse in Sarasota before spotting issues in Surfside“, below:.
It may take months to a year to get the final diagnosis for the cause of the collapse. But some potential future modifications of procedures may be considered to improve safety for oceanfront high-rises:
Any building manager should heed the warning from any inspection and address the issue promptly.
For purpose of inspection to result in timely repair work for any building, perhaps specifying a penalty amount (If the repair work is not initiated by 6 months, 12 months, or 24 months after engineer’s report is known. If the repair work has not begun by a given time frame, residents of the building would need to evacuate.) would help to clarify the degree of seriousness of the matter, since there are people who do not understand that “repair needed for major structural damage to maintain the structural integrity of the building” means “if repair due to major structural damage is not done, the building may collapse.”
Instead of recertification of the building at 40 year period, perhaps a shorter duration may be considered.
For oceanfront highrises, using stainless steel or titanium for rebar material may be considered.
Consider including sensors into design of the building that would help to provide 4D (x-, y-, z- axis and time) information about the building at any time in order to forewarn any potential problems.
I am a mother/wife/daughter, math professor, solar advocate, world traveler, yogi, artist, photographer, sharer of knowledge/information, and resident of Windermere, FL. I've worked professionally in applied math, engineering, medical research, and as a university math professor in IL and FL for about 20 years. My husband and I loved Disney and moved down to Central Florida initially as snowbirds. But we've come to love the warmth and friendly people offered by this community and decided to move down to Windermere, FL full time in 2006. I am now spending time sharing information/ knowledge online, promoting understanding of math and solar energy (via http://www.sunisthefuture.net ), and developing Windermere Sun (http://www.WindermereSun.com) as an online publication, sharing and promoting Community ABC's (Activities-Businesses-Collaborations) for healthier/happier/more sustainable living. In the following posts, I'll be sharing with you some of the reasons why Windermere has attracted us to become full-time residents of Central Florida region. Please feel free to leave your comments via email at "Contact Us" in the topbar above or via info.WindermereSun@gmail.com.
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Windermere Sun-Susan Sun Nunamaker
Founder/Owner/Editor/Producer of Windermere Sun