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Saturday 25 February 2017

Dry rot to blame for balcony collapse, says report

Ralph Riegel

Ralph Riegel

The balcony in Berkeley that collapsed
The balcony in Berkeley that collapsed

NEW regulations for buildings in Berkeley are to be introduced after US investigators confirmed that a balcony from which six students fell to their deaths collapsed due to dry rot.

The preliminary findings of the probe by the City of Berkeley in San Francisco concluded that eight timber support beams on the fourth-storey balcony had deteriorated massively.

"Based on their observations, city staff will recommend that the city council adopt new and modified regulations to enhance the safety of all current and future buildings in Berkeley," an official said.

The Library Gardens apartment complex was completed only in 2007. However, its balcony collapsed at 12.41am last week, throwing six students, five Irish and one Irish-American, to their deaths.

The report, compiled by City of Berkeley engineers, was published on the same day as the funerals of Eimear Walsh and Eoghan Culligan.

The funerals of Olivia Burke and Niccolai Schuster will take place in Dublin today.

Irish Independent

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