PAS OP, vallende balkons!


Elk jaar lezen we wel weer een paar keer dat er een balkon naar beneden is gekomen, eindelijk hebben ze in Sliema er onderzoek naar gedaan en meerdere gaan nu afgezet worden (INDERDAAD nog niet gedaan!!!)

Heel jammer dat er al meerdere mensen gewond zijn geraakt voordat ze er wat aan doen, maarja het is Malta.

Pas je dus wel even op wanneer je (bij slecht weer) onder een balkon doorloopt?

Studies on dangerous Sliema balconies wrapped up, works in coming weeks

Hundreds walk underneath these balconies in busy Bisazza Street

Structural studies on a number of dangerous balconies in a busy Sliema street have been wrapped up and reinforcement works are expected in the coming weeks.

The dilapidated balconies form part of St Paul's Court apartments overlooking the buzzing Bisazza Street.

Right underneath the balconies are retail and catering businesses, which see hundreds of people throughout the week.

The balconies are in hazardous conditions, with visible cracks and parts of concrete having chipped away too. Most of them even have steel reinforcement bars fully exposed.

The balconies are also labelled as "dangerous" in the Planning Authority's application to remove and replace the structures.

"Buildings built back in the 1960s and 1970s did not have the same quality concrete as we do today," Sliema mayor John Pillow told Times of Malta.

The architect of the project, Jean Luke Zarb, said studies have been done in the past two months to identify and categorise the type of damage to the balconies.

Work will kick off once all documentation requested by the Building and Construction Authority (BCA) is provided, and clearance for the project is given by the watchdog.

"Once clearance from the BCA is provided, we can actually start physical work on site," he said.

Zarb added that some balconies will need to be completely removed and others will simply require repair work.

"So, if it is just a bit of plaster coming off or a small area, which has missing concrete, we will repair that area through proprietary methods but there are a number of the balconies that need to be entirely removed," he noted.

The issue of crumbling balconies has come to the fore after five balconies were reported to have collapsed this year alone.

Back in September, a balcony collapsed on a busy pavement on the Gżira seafront, nine months after the local council and the police had flagged its condition.

In August, three balconies collapsed in a quiet residential street in Marsascala, damaging a parked car but fortunately, injuring nobody.

In the same month, a 32-year-old man was seriously injured when part of a balcony collapsed on him in St Paul's Bay.

In April, a 75-year-old woman died when her balcony collapsed in Birżebbuġa.

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