According to a report on the ONE NEWS web site, Urban Search and Rescue engineer David Frost has told the Commission he was surprised by the number of structural failings he found when he arrived at the site of the CTV around 30 hours after the quake.
A total of 115 people lost their lives as a result of the building’s collapse.
Frost says the building, which failed to absorb the shock of the 6.3 magnitude quake, collapsed suddenly and vertically, with the roof collapsing before a supporting wall fell on top of it.
“The building collapsed vertically, almost immediately, before much horizon shaking had occurred due to overloading of the building elements designed for gravity load,” he says.
“I believe it is also possible little or no horizontal loading was taken by the south wall and it may be it did not have an opportunity to perform as it should have,” he adds.
Earlier, witness Mathew Ross said the building had been shaking side to side and back and forth.
Ross said the top of the building was bending toward Madras Street and he expected it to collapse in that direction.
“I was surprised when it began to drop straight down…I thought one of the bottom floors had given out,” he said. “I could see the top floors were intact as they disappeared into the dust.”