A condo in Surfside, Florida collapsed unexpectedly on June 24. At least 128 people are missing. Insider spoke with three structural engineers to find out why such a building might abruptly fall. Common causes include poor maintenance or eroding soil under a structure's foundation. Something is loading.What is a building collapse?
The Collapse of Buildings. Buildings, like all structures, are designed to support certain loads without deforming excessively. The loads are the weights of people and objects, the weight of rain and snow and the pressure of wind--called live loads --and the dead load of the building itself.