SB 326 & SB 721
With the passing of SB 326 & SB 721, Property Managers will be required to follow stricter guidelines along with important inspections to ensure the safety of Exterior Elevated Elements (landings, decks, handrails, railing, raised walkways). Failure to comply with these new regulations will result in fines and the potential for building safety liens. Are property managers properly educated and prepared to execute the requirements necessary to provide a new level of public safety to Exterior Elevated Elements (EEE’s)?
What You Need to Know
Why this mandate?
SB 326 and SB 721 were enacted to increase the level of public safety regarding Exterior Elevated Elements and their associated waterproofing components. These new mandates were sparked due to the 2015 Berkley Balcony Collapse that left six people dead and others severely injured due to the collapse of a balcony that was not structurally sound.
What are EEE's?
Exterior Elevated Elements mean the load-bearing components together with their associated waterproofing systems.
Stair, Balcony, and Decking Railing
SB 326 requires associations to conduct visual inspections of exterior elevated elements and load-bearing components six feet above the ground, including balconies, decks, patios, and elevated walkways. SB 721 requires landlords of three or more multi-family dwelling units to conduct visual inspections. This inspection must be conducted by a Licensed Architect or a Licensed Structural Engineer. From the results of this visual inspection, further destructive testing or construction may be deemed necessary.
Inspections under SB 326 require a, "random statistically significant sample (95% confidence, ±5% error margin) of exterior elements which the association has maintenance or repair responsibility”.
Inspections under SB 721 requires that 15% of each type of exterior elevated element be inspected as part of the initial round of inspection prior to January 1, 2025.
Examples of Common Problematic Areas
Seams in sheet metal flashing.
Small gaps that can trap water and debris.
Edge conditions and penetrations: drip edge flashing, guardrail penetrations, wall base flashings, and door thresholds.
Cut ends of wood members.
Soft spots in decking, cracks or seams in waterproofing, and improper sloping of the deck.