Remote Inspection Software Could Have Prevented the Champlain Towers South Catastrophe

There is a misnomer among quality managers that an in-person inspection is more accurate than a Remote Inspection. The horrific collapse of Champlain Towers South near Miami, Florida is a case in point. The structural collapse of a residential building killing at least 11 people with 150 missing should be enough to make any municipality rethink their inspection methods.

According to the Wall Street Journal, an engineering firm gave conflicting messages related to the property’s inspection. Champlain Towers South underwent a forty-year recertification inspection in 2018. The engineering firm provided Surfside, FL with a report that warned of a serious design flaw that caused water to collect at the base of the building. However, a secondary report by the firm in the same year provided a passing inspection. Now, with the potential for so many casualties, one has to wonder where the accountability lies.

Here is the beauty of Remote Inspection. Had the engineering firm used CloudVisit Remote Inspection software to conduct the inspection, all of the details outlined in the conflicting reports could be recorded in real time and easily reviewed by forensic engineers in the future to better glean an understanding of what went wrong.

Reading an engineering report can be a tedious task. Sometimes it is easy to gloss over significant details. Wouldn’t it be great if there was a simple way to have a second pair of eyes review a site? This would certainly reduce the potential for human errors at sites like Champlain Towers South. Fortunately, today there is. CloudVisit Remote Inspection software allows auditors to obtain easy access to inspection data. This ensures that important structural defects are not overlooked. This was clearly the case at Champlain Tower South.

The Wall Street Journal has also reported that the Doral, FL building official that accepted Champlain Tower South, has been placed on leave. Municipalities everywhere should be waking up to the fact that when catastrophe strikes, they will be held accountable for botched inspections. CloudVisit Remote Inspection software empowers municipal workers to conduct more thorough building inspections with greater efficiency by reducing travel times and streamlining workflows.

The Condo Association’s attorney stated that the engineering firm’s reports were taken somewhat lightly. The deficiencies highlighted in the reports included standard degradation such as concrete spalling and rebar deterioration. Perhaps if the Condo Association had reviewed a video recording of the engineering firm’s findings, they would have taken the report more seriously.

The bottom line is that those with a vested interest in the safety of residents of a high-rise building should have any deficiencies completely documented. In the modern era complete documentation includes video recording. Therefore, the engineering firm, condo association, and building official all could have used CloudVisit Remote Inspection software to prevent the Champlain Towers South catastrophe from occurring and prevented the loss of life.

This is a case where traditional inspection methods have failed the public health. People have died, and there needs to be accountability. When engineering firms, building officials, residential associations and forensic engineers begin to trust CloudVisit’s ground breaking technology, we all can sleep better at 1:30 in the morning.



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