Just last November, a massive Five-Alarm fire rocked a multi-story residential building that was almost 80% complete at the time, completely destroying the project. This month, yet another multi-story residential tower that was almost complete caught fire, making it the 5th in 5 year to suffer the same fate. At least 3 of the previous 3 fires have been ruled as arson but, up to this point, no arrests for any of the previous arsons have been made.
Amid a housing crisis in California’s bay area, signs point to an individual or group actively trying to sabotage new housing developments in the area, according to the Developer of this most recent project. The total cost of construction of the 31,500 square foot, 6 story multi-use building is estimated at $80 million. The building fire started at 4:30am and no injuries were reported.
An on-site tower crane was also caught up in making the situation for nearby residents a dangerous one. Nearly 900 nearby residents from around the site were evacuated in case the crane ended up collapsing. Even if they weren’t evacuated, chances are they would have left anyway, as temperatures around the fire registered at over 1,000 degrees Fahrenheit.
Jermey Davis, a fire investigator, told NBC Bay Area that arson is a hard thing to prove, but fires started accidentally behave fundamentally different than one started on purpose. He says a naturally started fire makes a V-shape, starting with the point at the bottom and then spreading out as it gets higher. A fire started by gas or other flammable liquid is very wide at the base.
In the video below (first video), you can see the crane actually spinning due to the fire. The following day, the crane was taken down, by being pulled over by a cable attached to an excavator (second video on bottom).
Full story: Video: Huge fire tears through Oakland construction project | San Francisco Business Times
Contact with overhead power lines is a major hazard when working on most construction sites and especially when working from elevated platforms or with heavy machinery.
When construction workers cut through nature and dig in the ground, it shouldn’t be a surprise when wildlife is encountered, although some are a little bit more frightening than others. Last year, crews had to help free a giant bear that was stuck in a cesspit and the bear was happy at all about it.
As annoying as it may be to deal with sometimes, there is a good reason why trucks carrying oversized loads have spotters and flaggers. We’ve seen the worst of what can happen when the spotter fails to alert truck drivers in time, like the one that caused a 2013 Washington State bridge collapse, so it’s better to be safe than sorry.
Residents living near a Jersey City, New Jersey construction site were frightened as they watched “explosions” of smoke coming out of holes in the ground.
For almost 80 years, the Old Kosciuszko Bridge connected Brooklyn and Queens in New York. Much like many other bridges its age, it is being replaced due to capacity issues and deterioration. When it was completed in 1939, it was built for 10,000 cars per day. Unfortunately for the people who needed to use that bridge that past few decades, around 180,000 cars used it.
Smaller heavy construction equipment is the most likely to be stolen on a jobsite, but most of the time the thieves try to sell the equipment for money. On rare occasions, the thief just takes the machine out on the town for a joy ride and leading the police on some pretty frustrating pursuits. Early last year, a man in Florida stole a backhoe and lead police on a wild 3 hour chase as the hammer attachment drug along the asphalt throwing sparks the whole way. Just last week, police dash cam footage showed an 18 year old backing over a police cruiser, with an officer still inside, and then leading several other officers on a slow chase.
As we saw after the Lake Oroville Dam in California collapsed earlier this year, dam failures can have sudden and devastating effects. Recent footage showing raging muddy waters swallowing a construction site in a matter of seconds has been shared after river dam in Thatom, Loas failed.
Hurricane Irma ripped through the Caribbean and landed in South Florida a little over a week ago, sadly killing at least 50 people in Florida and causing plenty of property damage. High winds that accompanied the storm also caused the collapse of 3 construction cranes – two in Miami and one more in Fort Lauderdale. The crane in Fort Lauderdale was recently dismantled and the action was caught on video.
As if the high winds and heavy rains weren’t enough of a safety hazard for the people of Florida, citizens who are staying in the area also need to be concerned about the dozens of tower cranes that are still erected throughout downtown.
New demolition videos are always fun to watch. You know what’s even better, though? A bunch of demolitions all at once.