Days before the Florida condo collapsed, a pool contractor was told that the equipment room flooded so often that the water-pump motors had to be replaced every 2 years, a new report says

Half of a gray condo building is damaged and partially collapsed against a blue sky.
Part of the Champlain Towers South condo building in Surfside, Florida, collapsed early on Thursday. Reuters
  • A Miami Herald report highlighted water issues in the partially collapsed Champlain Towers South.
  • The pool-equipment room was said to have flooded so often that pump motors had to be replaced frequently.
  • In 2018, an engineer noted a “major” design flaw related to water damage in the parking garage.
  • Visit Insider’s homepage for more stories.

The pool-equipment room in the partially collapsed condo in Surfside, Florida, flooded so consistently that pump motors used to clear out water had to be replaced every two years, a building staff member recently told a pool contractor who spoke with the Miami Herald on Monday.

Eleven people have been confirmed dead since part of the building collapsed on Thursday. Authorities in Surfside have said that at least 150 people are unaccounted for.

The pool contractor, whom the Herald did not name, told the newspaper that he’d visited the building two days before the collapse and was surprised by the state of the garage and the basement.

While it may take months to determine why part of the condo collapsed, expert testimony has suggested that the likely cause was a structural failure at the bottom of the building.

The pool contractor noted cracks in the concrete and said the amount of water at the condo was unusual.

The staff member who showed the contractor around the building told him that workers were pumping water out of the equipment room so frequently that they had to replace pump motors every two years, the contractor told the Herald.

“I thought to myself, that’s not normal,” he told the Herald, adding that the staff member did not inform him about any structural damage.

The contractor added that the parking garage below the pool deck had deep standing water.

In 2018, an engineer carrying out an inspection of the 40-year-old building noted a “major” design flaw in the lower level that had led to water damage eroding concrete structures.