Chicago area porch collapse injures 11 in second serious incident this month

Eleven people were injured after a porch railing gave way overnight in Calumet Park in the second serious case this month of a Chicago porch collapse.

In this incident, four people plunged 15 feet after the railing collpased about 10 p.m. Monday in the 12400 block of South Ashland Avenue, according to WBBM News Radio.

Calumet Park Fire Chief Tom Battistella said two victims were unconscious following the fall and were taken to Advocate Christ Medical Center in Oak Lawn. Another two people were taken to Metro South Medical Center in Blue Island. Seven people refused treatment, Battistella said.

Sixteen remaining residents were evacuated from the building following an early inspection, according to WGNTV News.

“We have some porches that are in question. The building department already found some faults,” Battistella said. “For the safety of the residents we decided to shut it down so no one will get hurt.”

Battistella said village officials are trying to contact the owners of the three building apartment complex, which he said he believes are in foreclosure.

Those injured will have a good claim against the landlord and/or owner, and the building’s liability insurance, if the buildings were insured.

Just two weeks ago on this blog, Chicago premise liability attorneys and personal injury and wrongful death lawyers wrote about the dangers of collapsing porches and stairwells in aging Chicago buildings. A tragic Lincoln Park collapse six years ago killed 13 people and prompted building inspectors to crack down on negligent property owners and landlords.

However, a Chicago Tribune investigation published earlier this month revealed that increased enforcement may have waned amid 700 complaints of faulty porches submitted to the city so far this year.

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