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For all of you architects giving your input...

...deck loading is defined by the building codes and is based on a "X" pounds per sq. ft. for static and dynamic (live) loading conditions. Decks are usually well overbuilt and over-designed to exceed code requirements, sometimes even to accommodate hot tub loading. The expansive deck of this house is very large with a capacity of much more than 25 people. This is a very large vacation home with a very large deck and a substantial quantity of loading should be anticipated in the design and construction requirements.

An investigation will likely find one or more of the following as a causal factor(s):
Building code is inadequate to meet potential live loading.
Design was inadequate to meet code live loading requirements.
Construction methods didn't follow the design intent.
Construction methods didn't follow the building code standard.
Construction inspection didn't identify lack of meeting the building code requirements.
Construction methods utilized defective and/or undersized materials.

You can bet there will be an investigation and analysis of this failure.

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