What Construction Accidents Say About South Florida's Economy

Oct 11, 2012

A parking garage in Doral collapsed yesterday killing 3 construction workers, and severely injuring others.

Looking back at a history of construction accidents in the past six years, you will see that from 2006 to 2008, the region was seeing quite a bit of crane accidents, and other common construction accidents.

Jump to 2009... 2010.... 2011, it's gets a lot harder to find some.

So what happened?

During those years, South Florida was in the depths of a bad construction  and foreclosure crisis, which means there was very little construction in the area. The probability of a construction accident was considerably lower at the time.

In the early to mid-2000's, however, South Florida was in an all-out housing and construction boom.  This means the likelihood of an accident was at its absolute highest.

Construction accidents, especially when they claim the lives of people, are horrible things, but when you see a lot of them close together-- or at all-- it says something about where our economy is.

Experts have said that south Florida's construction economy is slowly getting better, although, we are still worlds away from where we were.

Here are some examples of construction accidents I stumbled upon:

May 2006

Three construction workers were consumed by a deluge of wet cement that was being poured for the roof of building one of Bal Harbour condominiums. The wet cement weighed down the roof ultimately collapsing on top of the three men.

Construction crews had to eventually take apart the top floors of the building to investigate what happened.

June 2006

A 43-year-old man in Fort Lauderdale was working at the construction site of the Trump International Hotel & Tower when he was suddenly crushed to death by steel scaffolding.

March 2008

A 14,000-pound slab steel meant to be attached to a crane fell 37 stories to the ground and smashed a nearby building.

Two workers died inside that building, four others were injured.

According to a Miami Herald article, "a crane extension plunged from the Paramount Bay, a 46-story project in the busy redevelopment area east of Biscayne Boulevard and north of the Omni complex."

April 2008

Two men were hurt after a crane fell on top of a building in Aventura. The two men were trying to install a big air conditioning unit in a condo at the time.

Thankfully, it was a smaller crane so no one was killed.

June 2008

A 318-foot crane snapped and came crashing down near the construction of a condominium, killing no one.

September 2012

Besides the Doral garage collapse, the latest accident was another parking garage collage on the west side of the Broward County Courthouse. The accident happened during an ongoing demolition.

Two men sustained some minor injuries, but it mostly just made a big mess.