Tag Archives: Berkeley balcony collapse

My Words From 2017 Still Stand Today

I stumbled upon the minutes of A Building Standards Commission meeting from January of 2017…and I spoke out four times during that meeting. I still stand by these words today.

AND STILL TOTALLY TRUE TODAY!
ARCHITECTS OR AT LEAST 98%, DON’T UNDERSTAND WATERPROOFING BECAUSE THEY DON’T TEACH IT AT ARCHITECT SCHOOL!
HELLO, IS IT ME OR IS IT ARCHITECTS? CAN CAL POLY AND OTHER ARCHITECTURE SCHOOLS ACTUALLY TEACH WATERPROOFING FIRST TO THEIR STUDENTS?

And then there’s this, from the Irish Sun, where I put it bluntly. And I have to wonder, are things really any better today?

YEAH THE IRISH SUN QUOTED ME, ALMOST…THEY CAN’T PRINT MY EXACT WORDS ABOUT BERKELEY

The Seventh Anniversary of The Tragic and Avoidable Berkeley Deck Collapse is June 16th. We Shall Never Forget You…

Ashley Donohoe, Olivia Burke, Eoghan Culligan, Niccolai Schuster, Lorcán Miller, Eimear Walsh and sadly Aiofe Beary, who was badly injured but survived the initial fall, sadly passed away recently. Seven lives cut short. Six lives permanently altered.

Last weekend I was in Berkeley. I stayed right around the corner from 2020 kittredge Street where the balcony collapsed. I was looking for a place to park my vehicle and they have a parking area there. It didn’t even strike me at the time when I drove in and parked that this was holy ground.

I walked outside of the garage and was on the sidewalk… I looked at it and then I looked up. When the place was library gardens there were two decks, one of which fell. As I walked down that sidewalk where they lay I trembled.

The Berkeley deck collapse was entirely preventable…and must not happen ever again. I call upon every state in the nation to implement deck inspections. Lives are at stake.

MY OPINION – THE SB 326 & SB 721 BALCONY BILLS NEED TO BE COMBINED & AMENDED

I am a balcony inspector the company that I work for does inspections under the two balcony bills. I speak often with other people in my industry including other balcony inspection company inspectors. We pretty much all agree that there is a lot of confusion amongst owners boards of directors and even the attorneys on interpreting the language in the balcony bills.

SB 326 regulates balcony inspections for condominiums. It requires inspections every 9 years by a structural engineer or an architect. It also requires a much higher percentage of balconies be inspected as opposed to what is required for apartment balcony inspections.

SB 721 regulates balcony inspections for apartments. Under this bill a general contractor can perform balcony inspections.

Continue reading MY OPINION – THE SB 326 & SB 721 BALCONY BILLS NEED TO BE COMBINED & AMENDED

The Future is Here For Condo’s That Don’t Maintain; and It Doesn’t Look Good From Where I Stand

In a search today for something entirely unrelated to decks, I stumbled upon the news that a Homeowners Association in Diamond Bar CA had been red-tagged and the residents ordered to leave their homes because of deferred maintenance leading to structural concerns. The order to leave has been rescinded after the first engineers report declared the property and immediate hazard and recommended evacuating units was found to be lets say “over cautious”. There are 155 condos at the property on the first and second floors. The second floor units have balconies while first floor units have a patio.

Photo credit to The Patch Diamond Bar.

 Several structural engineers reports on the conditions found at The Village at Diamond Bar came to the conclusion that “while there are substantial deferred maintenance issues that should be addressed throughout the complex property, the condition does not create a widespread and immediate danger to the life or safety of all occupants of the individual units as previously recommended via a report by Khatri International, a structural engineer hired by the Diamond Bar Village Homeowner’s Association.

Continue reading The Future is Here For Condo’s That Don’t Maintain; and It Doesn’t Look Good From Where I Stand

Excellent Read for Condo & HOA Managers “Footing The Bill Paying for SB 326 Balcony Inspections”

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

I stumbled on this article by Rachel Miller Esq and Sarah Brown with Reserve Specialist Dennis Eckert RS PRA on CAI’s website. Here Ms. Miller and Ms. Brown discuss the balcony bill in detail and raise a very good point-that Condo’s less than 10 years old may have additional rights under SB-800. Hidden damage exposed during destructive testing may qualify as a latent defect under SB 800 and therefore repairs might be paid for by the builder.

Continue reading Excellent Read for Condo & HOA Managers “Footing The Bill Paying for SB 326 Balcony Inspections”

Reputations and Brands Take Years to Build, Why is This One Allowing Their Good Name to Be Abused?

Imagine driving into a Ford dealership; you are looking to buy a new car…

After taking your new Ford home and driving it for a couple months you have a problem with it. No problem you think, I’ll go to the dealership and they’ll fix it under the factory warranty right? Away you go and the dealership looks at you and says, we’re sorry, your warranty was for only 30 days and 30 days has passed…we can fix it for $X,XXX.xx.

You stand there in disbelief, saying wait this is a Ford dealership, I bought the car from you and have a factory warranty. The service manager says no you don’t, we warranty the car but only for 30 days after you buy it. So you call Ford and say hey I bought a car from X dealership and they say there’s no factory warranty available, what’s up with that?

Continue reading Reputations and Brands Take Years to Build, Why is This One Allowing Their Good Name to Be Abused?