Just three years before the fatal Elliot Lake mall collapse, pictures were taken of rusting structural steel found inside the mall, the public inquiry has learned.
Under questioning at the public inquiry, Elliot Lake's chief building official, Bruce Ewald, led inquiry lawyers through a series of pictures he took during his inspection of the Algo Centre Mall in 2009.
The pictures show rust and a lack of fire-proofing on a number of steel beams — including the one that ultimately gave way last summer.
When the beam failed in the summer of 2012, concrete slabs crashed through the floors below, killing two women.
Ewald testifed he was concerned enough about the condition and structure of the mall in September of 2009 to issue an order to remedy under the property standards act. That order required the owner of the mall to fix the leaking roof and have an engineer assess the structure.
Evidence introduced at the inquiry showed engineer Robert Wood inspected the mall in the months following.
But the documents showed it was a visual inspection — meaning no drywall or other impediments were removed to see what was going on where steel beams were not visible.
Questions were also raised at the inquiry about the "scope of work" Wood was given for that inspection.
Documents showed he only investigated sections of the mall where serious leaking was known to have occurred, rather than the entire mall, as the order required.
Ewald testified the order to remedy was lifted in February of 2010 because it was felt all conditions had been met.
The inquiry was established in July 2012 by the Ontario government to report on events surrounding the mall roof's collapse, and the deaths of Lucie Aylwin and Doloris Perizzolo, as well as the injuries to others and the emergency management and response.
Hearings began March 4 and are expected to conclude with testimony from former premier Dalton McGuinty on Sept. 12.
Elliot Lake inquiry schedule of testimony:
|Witness||Dates (subject to change)|
|PART ONE - COLLAPSE|
|Bruce Ewald, Chief Building Official, City of Elliot Lake||May 24, 2013|
|Judy McCulloch, Manager, Customer Service, Scotiabank||May 27, 2013|
|Don Denley, Former City of Elliot Lake Councillor||May 27, 2013|
|Sonia Saari, Structural Engineer, Corselab||May 28, 2013|
|Tom Turner, Former Mall Manager, Eastwood Mall||May 28, 2013|
|Panel: Hassan Saffarini, P. Eng - NORR Chris Hughes, Architect - NORR Pouria Ghods, P. Eng - Giatec Scientific Aaron Dinovitzer, P. Eng - BMT Fleet Technology||May 29 and 30, 2013|
|Rhonda Lendt (Bear), Former Mall Manager, Eastwood Mall||June 4, 2013|
|Philip Sarvinis, Engineer, Read Jones Christofferson, retained by Eastwood Mall||June 5, 2013|
|Ralph Regan, Former Inspector, Ministry of Labour||June 5, 2013|
|Tracy Patrick, Former Assistant to Robert Wood and Gregory Saunders, M.R. Wright||June 6, 2013|
|Gregory Saunders, Engineer, M.R. Wright||June 6, 2013|
|Robert Woods, M.R. Wright||June 7 and 10, 2013|
|Antoine-René Fabris, Lawyer, retained by Eastwood Mall||June 11, 2013 ** To start with Mr. Fabris' testimony on June 10 if done with Mr. Wood before the end of the day on June 10.|
|Rob DeBortoli, Chief Administrative Officer, City of Elliot Lake||June 12, 2013|
|Lesley Sprague, City Clerk||June 13, 2013|
|Ed Hudson, Former Inspector, Ministry of Labour||June 13, 2013|
|Majid Milani-Nia or Jaime M. Hass, Pinchin||June 14, 2013|
|Ron McCowan, McCowan and Associates, considered purchase of Mall||June 14, 2013|
|Rick Hamilton, Mayor, City of Elliot Lake||July 8, 2013|
|Roger Jeffries, Engineer, Ministry of Labour||July 9, 2013|
|Robert Racko, Developer||July 10, 2013|
|Dale Craig, Expert, Engineer, J.L. Richards||July 10, 2013|
|Levon Nazarian, Leasing manager and real estate advisor, Eastwood Mall||Starting July 11 and continuing for the rest of the week of July 8 (and week of July 15 if necessary), 2013|
|Robert Nazarian, Owner, Eastwood Mall||Week of July 15, 2013|