Claims – Contr Prof Liability

April 18, 2019

City sues contractors over transfer station issues

Source: https://www.weatherforddemocrat.com, April 17, 2019
By: Joseph Brown

Huntsville has authorized a lawsuit against three contractors in a bid to recoup repair costs for structural issues at the hub for the city’s trash.

In January, city officials revealed that pavement for the driveway at the transfer station was cracking and crumbling, just 18 months after the near $3.6 million facility opened its doors. Officials later discovered that the contractor did not provide lime stabilization, did not install steel reinforcements nor did they deliver the desired concrete thickness, according to attorney Jeff Chapman of the Chapman Firm, who is representing the city in the litigation.

“The pavement at the transfer station was cracking, crumbling and deteriorating in a way that is not acceptable, and in a way that was not anticipated from the intended design and construction,” Chapman said.

The city’s lawsuit will be filed against the facilities designer Weaver Consulting Group, contractor-at-risk Anchor Construction and subcontractor Liberty Concrete.…

April 17, 2019

Skanska disputes Salesforce Transit Center officials’ take on cracked beams

Source: https://www.constructiondive.com, March 29, 2019
By: Kim Slowey

Skanska USA this week accused Salesforce Transit Center officials of ignoring the role design played in the shutdown of the $2.2 billion San Francisco facility in September, a month after it opened.

Skanska subcontracted the center’s structural steelwork from general contractor Webcor Obayashi, and, in August, transit center workers discovered significant cracks in two steel beams. In a statement sent to Construction Dive, Skanska maintains that it and steel fabricator Herrick Corp. performed the work to specifications and as directed by the Transbay Joint Power Authority’s (TJPA) engineer, Thornton Tomasetti.

It was Thornton Tomasetti, Skanska said, that directed it to cut the girder holes that turned out to be the trigger point for the larger fractures, according to a subsequent investigation by the authority.

However, Skanska said it takes issue with what it characterizes as the authority’s attempts to downplay Thornton Tomasetti’s and its own parts in the deficient beams. “TJPA officials have made incorrect statements around the agency’s responsibility for the girder inspection process,” Skanska said, “as well as the role and actions of their designer, Thornton Tomasetti, who was responsible for the structural design of the facility.”…

April 17, 2019

Salesforce Transit Center’s inspection missed flaws that led to cracked beams

Source: https://www.constructiondive.com, March 20, 2019
By: Kim Slowey

Dive Brief:

  • After a March 14 meeting of the Transbay Joint Powers Authority, Executive Director Mark Zabaneh told reporters that two cracked beams, which led to the ongoing shutdown of the $2.2 billion Salesforce Transit Center, were the result of a “failure of quality control in the construction process,” according to the San Francisco Chronicle.
  • Four layers of inspections conducted by steel fabricator Herrick, steel installer Skanska, general contractor Webcor-Obayashi and the authority’s quality-assurance contractor Turner Construction failed to detect that the grinding necessary to prevent cracking of steel members had not been carried out, Zabaneh said. The grinding of welding access holes prior to welding would have eliminated the small cracks that led to larger fissures in the two steel beams, according to an authority consultant.
  • Zabaneh said that this quality control failure led to the review of “tens of thousands” of construction and inspection documents to make sure that no other major flaws had gone undetected. About 85% of the records had been examined as of March 14 and no additional problems with the structure had been found.
April 11, 2019

Lawsuit filed against firms in Fraser sewer collapse

Source: https://www.detroitnews.com, April 9, 2019
By: Sarah Rahal

A lawsuit has been filed against three companies in connection with a sewer line collapse in Fraser that cost $75 million to repair.

Officials say the Macomb Interceptor Drain Drainage District filed the lawsuit Tuesday and seeks to recoup losses from the Christmas Eve 2016 collapse.

The broken line along 15 Mile caused a football field-sized sinkhole. Three houses had to be condemned. The sinkhole displaced more than 20 families during the holiday and closed a section of 15 Mile on the border between Fraser and Clinton Township for nearly all of 2017, officials said.

Macomb Public Works Commissioner Candice Miller said earlier this year that an assessment determined a quick release of waste and water into a sewer line fractured the pipe, which drew in sand and created a void in the surrounding soil.

A lawsuit has been filed against three companies in connection with a sewer line collapse in Fraser that cost $75 million to repair.

Officials say the Macomb Interceptor Drain Drainage District filed the lawsuit Tuesday and seeks to recoup losses from the Christmas Eve 2016 collapse.…

April 4, 2019

Developer built unsafe leaning condo tower to cut costs: suit

Source: https://nypost.com, April 3, 2019
By: Priscilla DeGregory and Tamar Lapin

Forget Pisa — New York has the leaning tower of South Street.

A brand-new, 58-story condo in the Financial District is listing north like a drunken investment banker due to a faulty foundation — a defect that could cause bits of the tower to fall to the street, a Manhattan civil suit claims.

The 3-inch tilt to the north on 161 Maiden Lane was caused by cost-cutting measures on the part of the developer, Fortis Property Group, claims the lawsuit, filed by project contractor Pizzarotti.

Fortis allegedly opted not to drive piles into the soft ground of the site by South Street Seaport on the East River before it laid the foundation, saving them $6 million, the suit alleges. “The building structure has settled and moved to such a degree that the structure is encroaching on a neighboring property line,” according to the papers filed last month in Manhattan Supreme Court.…

April 4, 2019

Contractor Sues Fortis Over ‘Unsafe’ Leaning Condo Tower Near Seaport

Source: https://commercialobserver.com, April 2, 2019
By: Rebecca Baird-Remba

Pizzarotti says it can’t finish the building at 161 Maiden Lane due to off-kilter foundation

A Financial District condominium tower is leaning, and the contractor on the project claims the developer is to blame.

The 670-foot-tall, 58-story apartment building under construction at 161 Maiden Lane is leaning three inches to the north, according to a lawsuit filed in New York State Supreme Court by the project’s contractor, Pizzarotti. An off-kilter foundation is affecting the building’s structural integrity, facade, waterproofing and elevators, the recent suit argues.

Developer Fortis Property Group, working with a previous general contractor, opted not to drive piles into the soft ground of the site by South Street Seaport on the East River before it laid the foundation because Fortis wanted to save money, the contractor claims in the suit. Instead, Pizarrotti alleges, Fortis decided to use a cheaper “soil improvement” method, which involves compacting and draining the damp earth to make it more stable.…

February 22, 2019

Residents File Lawsuit Against Contractors, Verizon For 3-Alarm Gas Fire

Source: https://www.sfgate.com, February 20, 2019

Two San Francisco residents filed a lawsuit Tuesday against the construction company and contractors involved in a gas line rupture that caused a three-alarm fire earlier this month on Geary Boulevard.

According to the suit, plaintiffs Carina Kouyoumji and Nora Wixom are suing Mastec Services Company Inc.; Mastec Renewables Construction Company Inc.; Kilford Engineering Inc.; and Advanced Fiber Works Inc. Verizon Communications Inc. has also been named as a defendant.

Both plaintiffs live in one of the five buildings badly damaged by the Feb. 6 fire, which ignited after workers installing fiber optic lines near Geary Boulevard and Parker Avenue struck a PG&E gas line.

The lawsuit alleges the explosion was a direct result of the defendants’ “reckless and willful violation of California law of using a backhoe to dig a trench near subsurface installations.”

The California Government Code requires anyone excavating near a subsurface installation, such as a gas line, to use hand tools like a shovel.

The defendants are also accused of being negligent, causing a nuisance and trespassing.…

February 22, 2019

Naples-based Stock Development dealing with construction defects at Paseo in Fort Myers

By: Laura Layden

Tony Conte is tired of dealing with construction defects at his part-time home in Paseo.

While fixes have been made at his condominium, some projects have dragged out, leaving him frustrated.

Planks of wood reinforce his second-story balcony — and the manager of the Fort Myers community told him that it’s unsafe to use and not to walk on it, although Conte has to step on it to go in or out of his front door.

“We’ve had a dramatic spate of water intrusion issues, which were the first indications there was something wrong,” Conte said.

The developer, Naples-based Stock Development LLC, and its sister company Stock Construction, have filed multiple lawsuits and sued a laundry list of companies over the defects, from the architects to the roofers.

One of Stock’s lawsuits names more than 13 defendants, including RDL Architects Inc., based in Shaker Heights, Ohio, and Gulf Western Roofing & Sheet Metal in Bonita Springs. The claims in the suit range from negligence to breach of contract and from violations of the Florida building code to breach of warranty.…

February 13, 2019

Quake-damaged middle school has faced design questions since it was built in the early 1980s

Source: http://www.alaskastar.com, February 12, 2019
By: Matt Tunseth

Engineers had serious questions about whether Gruening Middle School could withstand a powerful earthquake from the time the school was built, according to a collection of news stories written about the school’s troubled construction in the early 1980s.

“A major earthquake would produce significant damage and a possible partial collapse,” at the school, California engineering firm Forell/Elsesser Engineers Inc. wrote in a 1983 report to the Anchorage School District.

The firm was commissioned by the district after consultants determined the building — which was supposed to open in the fall of 1983 — was seriously flawed, news stories said. An investigation found errors in the engineering calculations and pointed out that the plans for the school didn’t receive oversight from Anchorage building inspectors, who some Eagle River builders resisted at the time. The district eventually retrofitted the school (which opened to students in 1984), but Forell/Elsesser warned inherent design flaws would likely always be an issue.

“It is not possible to overcome all deficiencies without major and costly reconstruction,” the company wrote.…

February 8, 2019

Builder of collapsed FIU pedestrian bridge had troubling construction failure at Port Everglades

Source: https://www.floridabulldog.org, February 6, 2019
By: Dan Christensen

Two months after last year’s fatal FIU pedestrian bridge collapse in Miami, the company that built the bridge was responsible for a troubling construction failure at Port Everglades.

Munilla Construction Management LLC, which operates as MCM, was hired by Broward County in 2016 as the prime contractor for the Slip 2 expansion project at the north end of the port. The $18-million project, completed in August 2017, saw low-bidder MCM extend the length of the slip about 250 feet to the west and deepen it 50 feet to accommodate larger cruise and cargo ships.

Last May 4, however, something unexpected happened.

“One of the new fenders that MCM installed along Berth 4 fell off the wall this morning and into the Slip,” a port representative told an MCM manager in an email obtained by Florida Bulldog.  “We have already fished it out, and brought it back over to the storage yard, and temporarily hung a tire in that vicinity…This is now causing the Port to be concerned about the other fenders that MCM installed.”…