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A key to avoiding construction defects: inspect and inspect again

While the Florida construction industry continues to thrive, it is important for all developers, general contractors, subcontractors, engineers, architects, suppliers and others in the industry to pay attention to the fundamentals and ensure that projects are not only profitable, but safe and sound for their bottom-line customers: the public.

One of the fundamentals builders are urged by experts to pay attention to is inspections. Regular and careful inspections can help builders avoid construction defects in Florida condominiums, houses, apartment complexes and more.

We recently read an article by a forensic engineering firm that urges general contractors to implement a three-phase inspection system that can help not only avoid construction defects, but also help to ensure that workers on the projects are safe.

The first phase of the recommended inspection system is a preparatory phase that begins before the actual start of erecting the structures. The contractor should have critical personnel there (those who will be performing the work), as well as the quality control manager and any other needed quality control staff.

Everyone should go over the drawings, specifications, special requirements, etc., and make sure that all have been completed and approved. Then the participants should do a site walk-through and check that work is ready to begin.

The prep inspection is followed by the initial phase inspection, in which materials are reviewed. This phase can help prevent defects caused by flawed materials or products such as windows that fail to seal and keep water out.

Finally, there's a follow-up phase of inspections. These are done every day to make sure work conforms to plans and that problems are addressed rather than put off.

Experts say that if construction firms stick to these inspections regimens, they can avoid many of the problems that lead to construction defect litigation.

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