Case Study #2

If I were investigating the cause of the collapse, the information that I would need would be extensive. I would need to assess where and how factors contributed to the collapse. First and foremost, I would extract building information from the Department of Buildings. Since the incident occurred in a meeting room regardless of the buildings use type, I would assume it is an office suite. Typically, a building is designed according to its building usage and in this case a party should not be held in an office area. In understanding what led to the incident, I would need to know what occurred for the floor to collapse as well as the number of occupants at that time in the meeting room. Occupancy is important in this case because it is likely that the party exceeded it. The live load designed for that specific floor would be important in understanding if it was in fact caused by the occupants. I would also check for the quality of materials used in the floor of the incident. Apart from the building information aspect of the investigation I would also investigate how and why the Clemson University fraternity was able to gain access to that meeting room. This would be important because it could pinpoint a culprit, the students themselves or someone else. Ultimately the legal liability lies in who gained access and permission for this party to occur. The legal liability obviously does not end with them but rather with the design and construction of the building. The architect of this building would be contacted and questioned on the structural aspects of his or her design.

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