Special Investigation Team to Probe Chennai Building Collapse That Killed 60

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Special Investigation Team to Probe Chennai Building Collapse That Killed 60

amil Nadu Chief Minister J Jayalalithaa has announced a Special Investigation Team for probing the 11-storey building collapse that killed more than 60 people in Chennai last week.

Chennai:  Tamil Nadu Chief Minister J Jayalalithaa has announced a Special Investigation Team for probing the 11-storey building collapse that killed more than 60 people in Chennai last week.

The team will include experts from IIT and Anna University who will assist the police.

Although the building that collapsed had proper approval, Ms Jayalalithaa had said, "It appears the building did not adhere to the approved plan and it suffered from structural defects".

In fact, after an examination two days ago, an expert team from the Confederation of Real Estate Developers Association (CREDAI) said that there were major flaws in the under-construction building and called it a structural engineering disaster. The key failures they said were the use of weak load-bearing beams and columns, and use of sub-standard construction material, all of which 'compromised on safety'.

Dr R Kumar, Chairman of the CREDAI in Chennai told NDTV, "It's a pancake collapse, When the slabs fall one over another. The columns have fallen flat. They have failed in both the regions - the top and bottom - which means it's a complete structural failure."

The formal report would be released in a few days and circulated among all members to learn lessons from this tragedy.

The collapsed building is just around 500 metres away from the Porur lake outside Chennai. Investigators are also looking for irregularities in the project's soil testing, whether the soil in the area is strong enough to bear this kind of load.

Till a few decades ago this site used to be part of a huge wetland, a catchment area for the Porur Lake.

The police suspect the soil condition wasn't favorable for a high rise. Karuna Sagar, Additional Commissioner of Police, told NDTV, "We are probing everything. The design, construction and materials used."

While six people including the promoters are behind bars for criminal negligence, the builders deny all charges. They claim the building collapsed because it was struck by lightning.





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