Category Archives: balcony inspection

We’re Growing Again! Two New Page’s Added to Our Site!

We’ve added two new pages to our site recently!

Our first new page is a collaboration with North America Deck & Railing Association  and it allows visitors to DeckExpert.com to find deck inspectors that have passed NADRA’s Deck Inspection Training. You’ll go to NADRA’s page when you click on their links.

Click here to find a deck inspector in the US & Canada. 

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The second page we’ve recently added is for online web based courses on decks NADRA has an agreement with the Building Code College for you to either audit four courses on deck building, or to sign up and become a certified decking expert. The first version is free and we encourage everyone to audit the courses, Glen Mathewson, a recognized deck expert on building codes, wrote most if not all of the material. If you build/frame decks, this knowledge is very important. Take the time to take advantage of these educational opportunities and lets work towards making decks as safe as they can be.

Click here to start your way to becoming code proficient.

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Exterior Elevated Elements Working Group Agenda for 5/25/17 is Announced

 

9e0e3-0216001100The deck waterproofing industry needs to speak up!

From the California Building Standards Commission-

Notice is hereby given that the California Building Standards Commission (CBSC), Exterior Elevated Element (EEE) Subcommittee will solicit technical expertise on the items listed in the attached agenda and the link below.  The public is invited to attend and provide their input or comments.  For questions on this notice, please contact CBSC at (916) 263-0916.

http://www.bsc.ca.gov/calendar/othermtgs.aspx Website www.bsc.ca.gov

 

Continue reading Exterior Elevated Elements Working Group Agenda for 5/25/17 is Announced

Common Interest Developments Could Benefit From SB 721 Inspection of Deck’s -The Law Is Being Debated in Sacramento

Let’s make balconies safe by building them right with the best materials and skill available.

Why Associations Should Embrace SB 721

Requiring Deck Inspections

Opinion by Bill Leys

I would like to provide a different look at SB 721 Contractors-Inspections of Decks & Balconies that the Community Legislative Action Committee (CLAC), the lobbying arm of Community Associations Institute, is now mustering its members to oppose and why this bill may actually benefit multi-family housing, including CID’s.

You may, or may not know that this bill has come about because of the parents of the six dead and seven seriously injured Irish students who were on a balcony in an apartment building when it collapsed. At the time of this opinion, the builder has settled claims with the families and while the settlement is confidential, experts estimate the payouts by insurance carriers was around twenty million dollars. Now imagine if a deck at your Association fell and what the costs of settling that might be vs the costs of an inspection of your decks.

Continue reading Common Interest Developments Could Benefit From SB 721 Inspection of Deck’s -The Law Is Being Debated in Sacramento

 SB 721 Will Force the Inspections of Decks-Who Should Perform the Inspections?

DeckExpert.com supports the inspection bill for decks. The Berkeley tragedy, the lives lost and the survivors who are left with serious life long injuries, has brought us all to realize the need to implement an inspection & repair program on a statewide level. This “accident” was no accident. 

The collapse at Berkeley was on a path to occur somewhere-the building industry in California and beyond will argue against my points, but this tragedy was years in the making. There are many reasons for this-from architecture schools that don’t teach it’s students the basics of waterproofing.  For example, right here at Cal Poly SLO, many courses, not one on waterproofing. I’ve offered to give a lecture at Cal Poly; my offers have been meet with silence.

http://www.catalog.calpoly.edu/collegesandprograms/collegeofarchitectureandenvironmentaldesign/architecture/#courseinventory

The architect who designed the balcony in Berkeley designed it poorly. Continue reading  SB 721 Will Force the Inspections of Decks-Who Should Perform the Inspections?

CA Senator Jerry Hill Introduces SB-721 Contractors: decks and balconies: inspection

DeckExpert.com Supports Requiring Deck Inspections

Bill Duplicates Berkeley Bill Langauge in Who Can Perform Inspections

Should structural pest control operators, general contractors, architects or engineers inspect deck inspections as the state of CA is proposing?

They will be if the consulting and inspection industry doesn’t act quickly and object. Senator Hill has just introduced a bill that uses much the same language Berkeley’s city ordinance does.

“The inspection shall be performed by a licensed general contractor, structural pest control licensee, licensed architect, licensed engineer, or other licensee as approved by the Department of Consumer Affairs. The purpose of the inspection is to verify that all of the balconies and other elevated walking surfaces covered by this section are in generally safe condition, adequate working order, and free from hazardous dry rot, fungus, deterioration, decay, or improper alteration to the extent that the life, limb, health, property, safety, or welfare of the public or the occupants is not endangered.”

My thoughts-

Structural Pest Control Licensee-pest control licensee’s inspect buildings for termites/wood destroying organisms. They do not test roofs (or balconies) for water tightness, nor are they qualified to do so. Roof contractors can do so, but generally exclude themselves from inspecting decks. Pest control licensee’s do not know about waterproof coated decks, how they are installed, what problems to look for when doing an inspection and even if they do see a problem, don’t understand what caused it, what degree of a problems it is or how to repair it. Continue reading CA Senator Jerry Hill Introduces SB-721 Contractors: decks and balconies: inspection

R Brothers Waterproofing Has POS Victim Blaming Lawyers

When I read %&@! like this I want to hit something! From the Irish Times  article found here http://www.irishtimes.com/news/crime-and-law/berkeley-victims-may-have-contributed-to-balcony-collapse-1.2597039

“The plaintiffs and/or cross-complainants’ own carelessness and negligence may have proximately contributed to the events and damages complained of…”   

Those are the words in a filing from R Brothers Waterproofing attorneys on why the balcony in Berkeley collapsed last year, killing 6 people and leaving seven more with serious injuries and a lifetime of horror. 

It gets worse, R Brothers lawyers is trying to blame everyone else too – here they throw the architect under the bus. They may have a point but you don’t follow shitty plans either…

 “R Brothers Waterproofing also claims the “designs of others” that it had no responsibility for were to blame for the injuries complained of.

“This answering defendant did not select, design or approve the allegedly defective components,” it says under the heading of “causation”.
It also said it had no notice of any alleged defects and that the injuries alleged “were caused by third parties’ deficient work or products”.
So in California when one is looking at plans and one knows, as the licensed expert waterproofing contractor that they are, that the design is wrong, you don’t bid it. Secondly if it did slip by that the design was wrong and you did bid it, when you got to the job and saw what you were doing, you stop and don’t do the work until an RFI is made and a decision is issued by the architect and the general contractor. R Brothers apparently covered wet substrate with moisture trapping membranes and wants to say they aren’t responsible? 
So if R Brothers is saying this detail is wrong, why did
they apparently follow it? Inquiring minds want to know. 
Even worse, they say in their filing if we are found negligent, it’s secondary to others negligence…excuse me but WTF? 
I see it fairly simply-you check the moisture content of your plywood with a simple moisture meter. If it’s higher than 14-16% then you say can’t do it…and the problem is especially compounded when/if it was a double layer of OSB that’s soaking wet. It would take weeks of dry weather if ever to get that moisture content down to acceptable levels. 
Simple moisture meter gives a general reading of the moisture content
of the plywood I have the probes pushed into. The moisture content
is to high for applying a coating to right now so this wood needs
to dry more. 
Bottom line, the attorneys are POS scumbags IMO for even suggesting the victims had anything to do with their deaths and injuries.