Wednesday, May 25

Champlain Towers: Revealed letter warning neighbors about worrying deterioration of concrete in building that collapsed

While rescue work continues on part of the building Champlain Towers South en Surfside, Miami-Dade, which collapsed last week, was revealed a letter from the condominium president, which was sent last April, where he warned that the damage in the building’s concrete had “significantly worsened, from an inspection conducted in fall 2018.

The letter was written to the neighbors by Jean Wodnicki, President of the Champlain Towers South Condominium Association, and sent just last April, that is, almost two months behind the terrible collapse of a part of the building, according to published by the American newspaper The New York Times.

In the letter, dated April 9, 2021, Wodnicki explains to neighbors that the damage to the basement garage “got significantly worse” since an inspection was conducted in fall 2018.

But not only that, but the deterioration of the concrete of the building in Miami-Dade was progressing significantly, as engineers warned of serious structural failures.

And unfortunately at dawn last Friday a part of the building collapsed, which has so far left 11 people dead and 150 missing. Rescue teams are working hard on investigations into the building collapse in Miami-Dade.

Damages would advance exponentially, they warned

According to the inspection, carried out in 201, Wodnicki pointed out, the damage to concrete would “multiply exponentially” in the coming years, according to what was published by USA Today Y The Wall Street Journal, US media that first had access to the letter from the president of condominiums from Champlain Towers South.

That is why millions of dollars were required to be able to carry out the repairs in the condominium, but the high cost was a reason for “frustration” among the neighbors, the media highlighted.

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“We have discussed, debated and argued for years, and we will continue to do so for years to come as different elements come into play”, can be read in the letter, taken up and published by NOW.

Building design damage

In Wodnicki’s letter, he notes that the inspection conducted in 2018, the Champlain Towers South Condominium Association turned to the engineering company Morabito Consultants.

And in that inspection, the specialists detected “a major error” in the design of the condominium. Champlain Towers South, and stressed that it was necessary to solve, because otherwise the damage would be worse.

One of the damages cited in Wodnicki’s letter concerned the crumbling concrete columns in the garage under the structure.

“In the near future, the extent of concrete deterioration will expand exponentially”, stands out in the letter, taking into account the recommendations of Frank Morabito, the engineer who led the inspection.

Issue that seemed to have happened, according to the writings by the president of condominiums.

Millions of dollars for damage repair

“In fact, the observable damage, as in the garage, has worsened significantly since the first inspection,” Wodnicki said in his letter.

“When you can see the cracked concrete visually, that means the rebar that holds it together is rusting and deteriorating below the surface,” he says.

However, the cost of repairs at the time was around $ 7 million, which caused differences between the condominium association board, according to what was published by the newspaper.o USA Today.

This led to a new board taking control, but by that time a year had passed since the inspection and the damage continued to advance.

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But in the last April letter sent to the residents of Champlain Towers South, Wodnicki noted that the damage to the building was “much worse” than the last inspection in 2018, requiring more than $ 16.2 million.

“Because much of the concrete / waterproofing work required is underground, we must raise almost the entire ground level of the lot to access areas that require repair,” the letter to neighbors highlights.

“When doing any concrete restoration work, it is impossible to know the extent of damage to the underlying rebar until the concrete breaks open (…) Often the damage is more extensive than can be determined by inspecting the surface ”, is indicated on the chart.

You can also read:

–There are 11 deaths due to the collapse in Miami, the mayor promises to “get to the bottom” of the investigation

-Authorities lied to the inhabitants of the collapsed building in Miami: “Your condo is in very good condition”

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