Five contractors face possible license revocation in balcony collapse review

A balcony at Library Gardens in downtown Berkeley collapsed Tuesday, killing six. Photo: Emily Dugdale
The balcony at Library Gardens which collapsed in June 2015, killing six. Photo: Emily Dugdale

An investigation by the California State License Board (CSLB) has found five contractors involved in the Library Gardens balcony collapse were in “probable violation of law.” The CSLB reports its investigation to the state Attorney General’s office to determine whether to bring a case in administrative court, which could lead to suspension or revocation of the contractors’ licenses.

“What we’re investigating is did the contractors deviate from the accepted trade standards,” said Rick Lopes, spokesman for the CSLB. “CSLB’s investigation is still open. We are at a point where our enforcement staff have determined that a probable violation of California law has occurred that would lead to either the suspension or revocation of the licenses of the five contractors involved in the construction of the balcony.”

Read more on the June 16, 2015, balcony collapse.

The five companies under investigation are the general contractor Segue Construction, framing contractor Etter & Sons, waterproofing contractor R Brothers Waterproofing, plastering contractor Northstate Plastering, and flashing contractor The Energy Store of California. None are Berkeley-based. 


The details of the CSLB investigation are confidential. They will become public if accusations are filed by the Attorney General.

Last month, Alameda County District Attorney Nancy O’Malley announced her office would not be filing criminal charges in relation to the June 16, 2015, balcony collapse that killed six students, and left seven others with serious injuries.

Five months after the tragedy, families of those killed in the disaster, as well as those injured, filed a total of 12 lawsuits in Alameda County Superior Court claiming the contractor for Library Gardens used inferior wood to build the balcony that collapsed, and allowed it to be saturated by rain before enclosing it.

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