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
It’s a tale (tail) as old as time: a horse walks into a construction trench, gets stuck, has to be lifted out of it by a helicopter. The trench didn’t appear to be that deep, so I don’t think OSHA is going to need to get involved with this one.
For the third time in a year, construction workers have had to be rescued while dangling mid-air by fire rescue teams in Southern Florida. Last year, there were two incidents in Sarasota, Florida that involved failed suspended scaffolding in as many months. Just last week, another incident in Palmetto Bay required the Fire Department to intervene.
Demolitions by implosion seems like the easiest way to knock down a structure, but there is so much preparation that goes into it that even the slightest mistake can have a huge impact. When smokestacks are demolished correctly, it can be a thing of beauty, like when these two silos in Scotland hit each other midair or when this asbestos filled stack was precisely demolished to fall into a pool of water. Things didn’t go so smoothly for demolition crews in Denmark last week, however.
Crane collapses on construction jobsites are usually pretty terrifying, especially when the jobsite is full of workers. A construction site in St. Petersburg, Florida got extremely lucky when a large construction crane collapsed and narrowly missed several running workers.
This video is a bit of a throwback, but I recently came across it on the interwebs for the first time and thought it was worth a share.
It’s been a while since we have shared a demolition video on Construction Junkie. We recently discussed a very high profile demolition project, the tallest voluntary demolition on record, which is schedule to start next year and how it is expected to happen, but no videos. Between the cold weather in most of the country and the general lack of interesting demolitions happening, it’s good to finally be back to feeling normal around here.
Last Thursday, every construction professional’s worst nightmare happened. Lives were lost, both construction workers and civilians, by way of the catastrophic collapse of FIU’s under construction pedestrian bridge. We shared what we knew as of late Thursday night, but since this is not only a tragedy directly related to construction, but also a huge learning opportunity for the entire industry, I wanted to make sure we continued to follow and update on the story as it develops.
Terrible tragedy struck Florida International University’s (FIU) campus yesterday when a newly installed pedestrian bridge collapsed onto the road below, killing at least 4 and severely injuring many more.
It’s pretty amazing the work that can get done when a lot of resources and money are thrown at one project. Past examples of this include a gigantic sinkhole that was repaired in Japan in just under a week, the complete emergency rebuild of Atlanta’s I-85 overpass that was completed a month ahead of schedule, and this video of 116 excavators working side by side to demolish a 1,640 foot long overpass overnight.
When anyone sees a hard hat, they typically immediate associate it with construction. It’s the ultimate symbol of safety on the job site. We all know we should wear them, but it’s easy to get annoyed with the minor inconvenience that they cause and forget about the extreme consequences that could result if a falling object catches us when we aren’t wearing one.