Condo Collapse Spurs Hometown House Member to Demand U.S. Rules
(Bloomberg) -- A Florida congresswoman called for stricter federal building-safety standards on Thursday to prevent a repeat of the condominium collapse that killed at least 60 people and left dozens more missing in her state.
Representative Debbie Wasserman Schultz, a Democrat whose congressional district includes the condo development in Surfside, said more buildings could collapse or break down as they age and the federal government needed to have a “minimum floor” of safety requirements.
“We do have standards that are tangentially related at the federal level and so I do think it’s important to look into what standards should be adopted at the national level, at a minimum, because this is a tragedy of epic proportions,” she said on Bloomberg Television’s “Balance of Power” with David Westin. “We can’t allow this to ever happen again.”
The Champlain Towers South condominium building in Surfside, north of Miami, collapsed on June 24, killing 60. On Wednesday, officials called off the rescue efforts for the 80 people still missing. The rescue workers, who have been at the site for two weeks, are now searching for the remains of as many victims as possible, Miami-Dade Mayor Daniella Levine Cava said at a news conference Thursday.
Wasserman Schultz said construction should still be allowed in popular coastal areas despite the increased risks from climate change. And while she did not outline specific proposals, she said the impacts of changing climate and eroding shorelines should be considered during building inspections.
“When we build, we need to make sure that we’re taking coastal resiliency into account,” she said.
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