By Walt Hunter
PHILADELPHIA (CBS) — As the first anniversary of the June 5th demolition site collapse at 22d and Market Sts. that killed six and injured 13 approaches, a report by City Controller Alan Butkovitz raises serious questions about whether promises of reform to make sites safer are being met.
“There is little, if any, evidence to demonstrate that private demolitions are being conducted any more safely today than they were one year ago,” stated Butkovitz at a press conference inside his office at the Municipal Services Building.
Regarding inspections of 442 open demolition sites that the city claims it made in the week after the collapse, the audit found no documentation that 210 of them ever happened.
Driven by the collapse, the city publicly announced six inspections would now have to be completed for demolitions, but, the audit found, in a check of 18 sites, many of those inspections were waived without any explanations.
Licenses and Inspections Commissioner Carlton Williams in a 39-page written response, included in the Controller’s Report, refuted the findings raising “objections to the incomplete, inaccurate and misleading interpretations of Department data that underlie the Report’s recommendations.”