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Wildwood Deck Collapse Sends Three To Hospital

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WILDWOOD, MO (KTVI) - As we move into the summer months there will be plenty of people spending time outdoors.  Families will gather on decks, patios and balconies, but what about the safety of the structures?

On Memorial Day four adults celebrating on Sandlewood Creek Court in Wildwood got the shock of their lives.   Just before 1:30pm a second story balcony collapsed beneath the group dropping them down the first floor. Officials say there were problems with the strength of the balcony. Metro West Fire responded to the incident.

Capt. Jeff Haefer says his Fire Marshall and others are working with various property owners to prevent future accidents.  "There is a collaborative effort between our fire bureau and the property owners to determine safety issues and point out those things to prevent this from happening again. " said Haefer.

Jeff Thompson of Jeff`s Home Service has been building and maintaining decks for more than 10 years. He says it`s important to keep an eye on structures attached to buildings.
"Look for problems, decks have a life of about 20 years after that they are in need of repair or replacement." said Thompson.
Experts say there are more than 40-million decks in the United States and half are not up to code.  All four of the adults are dealing with ankle and back injuries. They were checked out and are expected to be ok. Neighbors say condo owners are set to start repairs on Tuesday.

The management company for the complex says the condo was individually owned and leashed out.

The management firm plans to have all of the balconies inspected as a courtesy, even though it is not legally obligated to do so.