Collapsed terrace Mallorca was illegal

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roof top terrace tragedy

MALLORCA – The terrace of the Medusa Beach Club restaurant-bar on Playa de Palma, which collapsed last Thursday, causing four deaths and fourteen injuries, turned out to be illegal.

The terrace did not have a municipal activities permit and was therefore not allowed to receive customers. This was stated by Jaime Martínez, the mayor of Palma, during a press conference on Tuesday. As a result, all activity on the terrace was considered “illegal”. There were 21 people on the terrace at the time of the disaster. After a table was assembled for 12 young Dutch people and mortar was applied to the central area, but not to the start and end zones, the structure could not support the excess weight and collapsed.

Terrace construction problems

According to Mayor Martínez, both the basement, where a music bar was located, and the ground floor, where the restaurant was located, had the required permits. However, the terrace above was not included in these permits. The Palma Fire Department concluded in a preliminary report that the terrace collapsed due to a combination of illegal construction work and overload in the form of the presence of approximately twenty customers on the first floor at the time of the incident.

Legal consequences of collapsed terrace

The Palma city council has sent its reports to the Public Prosecution Service and the National Police. The municipality will join as an injured party when legal proceedings are initiated against those possibly responsible for the tragedy.

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Victims

The four fatalities from the terrace collapse were two German tourists aged 20 and 30, a 23-year-old Spanish employee of the bar and a 44-year-old Senegalese man. The fourteen injured people, including Dutch people from a group of friends from the Netherlands, have been admitted to local hospitals.

Safety inspection

In 2020, the municipality of Palma had imposed a fine of €4,500  on an entrepreneur for carrying out illegal construction work in the same building. These violations include the construction of a deck that collapsed during the incident. The entrepreneur, partner of the entrepreneur who operates the Medusa Beach Club, was fined after several inspections that had taken place since 2013.

In an interview with Euronews, Enric Heredia, chairman of the Association of Structural Consultants, emphasised the importance of strict compliance with construction procedures and permits. “Construction projects are always delicate and require special attention, a concrete project plan, and good supervision of the implementation and commissioning,” says Heredia.

Also read: Update: Five more injured in hospitals after drama in Mallorca, including three Dutch

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