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What to Do in Hurricane Florence’s Aftermath

On behalf of Joel Rhine of Rhine Law Firm, P.C. posted October 19, 2018

The residents of North Carolina are beginning to piece together their lives after Hurricane Florence tore up the East Coast, claiming at least 43 lives on September 14, 2018. Countless trees are blocking roadways, making it difficult for homeowners to return to their properties to survey the damage and see what is salvageable. Officials are cautioning residents that five river gauges in North Carolina are still indicating major flood-stage waters, while an additional five are at moderate flood stage, meaning there is still potential for danger. Read the rest »

Posted in: Building Collapse

When a Ceiling Collapses in a Residence, Is the Landlord to Blame?

On behalf of Joel Rhine of Rhine Law Firm, P.C. posted August 10, 2018

A ceiling collapse can be a tenant’s worst nightmare. If you’re in the home, you may suffer severe injuries when a structure falls down on you. Even if you are not in the home at the time, you can still suffer damages if your personal belongings are destroyed in the collapse.

So who’s responsible when a ceiling collapses into the home of a tenant? The owner or property manager may be responsible under certain circumstances. Read the rest »

Posted in: Building Collapse

Porch Collapses in Hartford, Injures 12

On behalf of Joel Rhine of Rhine Law Firm, P.C. posted July 10, 2018

It’s happened again…An early-July celebration of new life turned disastrous when a Hartford, Connecticut, porch collapsed. Approximately 20 people were on the second-story porch, celebrating the birth of two babies, when the incident occurred. Twelve people, including a child and an infant, were taken to the hospital with non-life-threatening injuries. The fact that there were no fatalities is remarkable, considering that the victims endured a 20-foot drop onto the house’s backyard. Read the rest »

Posted in: Building Collapse

When a Ceiling Collapses in Public Housing

On behalf of Joel Rhine of Rhine Law Firm, P.C. posted March 31, 2018

A man in Brooklyn who lived on the top floor of the Weeksville Gardens Public Housing Development in Crown Heights was woken up around 2 a.m. by a loud noise. The ceiling in an adjoining bedroom had collapsed on top of Daniel Jeter Sr.’s girlfriend and son. Jeter rushed in and was able to pull the two from the plaster, insulation, and other debris. No one was seriously injured; however, this public housing complex has had similar collapses in the last year. The family said they didn’t have insurance to cover this type of event and will likely pursue some legal assistance. Read the rest »

Posted in: Building Collapse

Party Causes Apartment Floor Collapse in Texas

On behalf of Joel Rhine of Rhine Law Firm, P.C. posted January 22, 2018

A party in a third-floor unit at Ridge Apartments, a student complex in Denton, Texas, recently ended unexpectedly. The party of mostly students from the University of North Texas was interrupted when the floor collapsed, creating a massive hole into the apartment below. The fire department responded to 911 calls, and fortunately there were no life-threatening injuries. When responders arrived, some individuals were “dangling” between the floors. Investigators believe that the partygoers were jumping around and the floor was incapable of supporting the pressure. Read the rest »

Posted in: Building Collapse

Deck Collapses Present a Threat to Vacationers

On behalf of Joel Rhine of Rhine Law Firm, P.C. posted September 25, 2017

Many vacation rental homes along the North Carolina coast have exterior wooden decks to allow vacationers to enjoy the wonderful coastal scenery and weather. Unbeknownst to these vacation renters is the fact that many of these decks present a danger to anyone using them, including renters, their families, and friends.

NBC News reports that over 4,500 people have visited emergency rooms after deck collapses in the last decade. Across the U.S, an estimated 40 million decks exist, many several decades old. Read the rest »

Posted in: Building Collapse

Sandpiper Cove Balcony Collapse Injures Snowbird Club Members During Birthday Party

On behalf of Joel Rhine of Rhine Law Firm, P.C. posted March 6, 2017

Emergency personnel responded to Sandpiper Cove condominiums last Wednesday after a second-floor balcony collapsed. A total of 11 people were taken off-scene for medical care, with six of the victims being transported to Destin Emergency Care and five of the victims taken to Fort Walton Beach Medical Center. The victims had been celebrating a friend’s 82nd birthday when the deck collapsed. While no injuries appeared to be life-threatening, Destin Battalion Chief Mark Hutchinson said two of the victims were labeled as “trauma alerts,” while three others were deemed “trauma standbys.” Hutchinson also labeled the incident a “catastrophic” collapse.

One of the oldest condominium complexes in Destin, Sandpiper Cove consists of 631 privately-owned units that sit on 43 acres of land. Built in 1973, the housing complex is now set to undergo an inspection from building professionals in light of the deck collapse incident. While a thorough investigation should determine the cause of the incident, it may also reveal deficiencies in the building process which could have played a factor as well. Fortunately, construction litigation does hold developers, contractors, building material manufacturers, and design professionals accountable for their individual roles in the construction process, particularly if it can be determined that negligence of some kind led to an accident that could have otherwise been prevented.

Read the rest »

Posted in: Building Collapse

The Dangers of Deck Collapses

On behalf of Joel Rhine of Rhine Law Firm, P.C. posted December 12, 2016

deck-collapseNorth Carolina has 301 miles of splendid coastline, where the state’s famous beaches kiss the Atlantic Ocean. Many of the homes along our coast feature decks and porches where vacationers can enjoy the moist, salty air. Unfortunately, these beach conditions cause corrosion and can turn these decks into a dangerous time bomb in a short amount of time. Many decks are 12 to 15 feet off the ground, making a fall from such a height potentially fatal. Several deck collapses have occurred when a group of people gathered for a group picture, concentrating their entire weight on one section of deck.

Read the rest »

Posted in: Building Collapse

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