Realty Plus - - Contents -

The most prized pos­ses­sion of any In­dian fam­ily is their home. Hence, it is in­evitable to pri­or­i­tize safe­guard­ing the home or struc­ture’s longevity. Yet, some don’t en­sure timely re­pairs thereby lead­ing to un­for­tu­nate calami­ties such as build­ing col­lapses.

Build­ing fail­ures can be cat­e­go­rized into two broad groups - struc­tural or ap­pli­ca­tion fail­ures. Most of the build­ing col­lapses in In­dia are due to the use of sub­stan­dard raw ma­te­ri­als, in­suf­fi­ciently trained man­power and in­ad­e­quate su­per­vi­sion dur­ing con­struc­tion of multi-storey struc­tures. • Re­moval of load bear­ing mem­bers such as col­umns and beams, shift­ing of kitchen, toi­lets etc. within the flat with­out con­sult­ing struc­tural con­sul­tants or engi­neers is also a se­ri­ous is­sue. • Ad­di­tion­ally, one of the nat­u­ral and im­por­tant fac­tors that re­sult in build­ing col­lapse is rain­fall and there­fore build­ings need to be con­structed bear­ing in mind cli­matic con­di­tions of the re­gion. • Seep­age causes var­i­ous prob­lems such as rust­ing and in­ter­nal leak­ages. In most cases, it is dif­fi­cult to as­cer­tain the prob­lem. If wa­ter is left unchecked, sim­ple mois­ture can slowly in­fil­trate your build­ing en­ve­lope’s con­crete struc­tures, cor­rode the re­in­force­ment and wreak havoc through­out the struc­ture.

Di­ag­no­sis of De­fects and Con­di­tion

• Some­times, the builders do not con­sider the long term ef­fects of us­ing poor qual­ity raw ma­te­ri­als. Although, the projects are com­pleted with good ex­te­ri­ors and ap­pear­ances but many-atimes the raw ma­te­ri­als used are com­pro­mised. • Most co-op­er­a­tive hous­ing so­ci­eties are mis­led and en­gage in crack fill­ing and re­paint­ing. This is a su­per­fi­cial solution. • It is im­per­a­tive to un­dergo a thor­ough struc­tural au­dit be­fore any re­pair work, to clearly un­der­stand the true na­ture of the prob­lem and the re­me­dial mea­sures to be taken up to avoid fu­ture mishaps.

Timely Re­pairs

• Many res­i­den­tial build­ings con­sider rede­vel­op­ment as an al­ter­na­tive to re­pairs. How­ever, rede­vel­op­ment is not a sub­sti­tute for re­pairs. Re­pairs have to be car­ried out by the CHS and rede­vel­op­ment should not be con­sid­ered as an easy al­ter­na­tive. • There should be some reg­u­la­tion on age of the build­ing for rede­vel­op­ment. With the con­struc­tion prac­tices preva­lent these days, a struc­ture can ex­pe­ri­ence dis­tress and cracks within 10 years of con­struc­tion. • It is im­por­tant that so­ci­eties en­gage with des­ig­nated civil­struc­tural engi­neers for di­ag­nos­ing the prob­lems of the build­ing ev­ery 5 years, to cor­rectly iden­tify the prob­lems lead­ing to leak­age and rec­om­mend ap­pro­pri­ate waterproofing so­lu­tions.

Dr. San­jay Ba­hadur Global CEO, Con­struc­tion Chem­i­cal Divi­sion Pidilite In­dus­tries Ltd

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