The south tower of the Spinnaker condominium complex is where the accident occurred.


Residents and business owners are allowed back in the South Tower at the Spinnaker condominium complex in Sea Isle City after engineers deemed it is safe to return, three weeks after a balcony collapsed and killed a construction worker.

A representative from the Spinnaker office in Sea Isle confirmed Thursday afternoon that the South Tower is open to residents. The retail space below the units of the South Tower also reopened.

Jose Pereira, 43, the worker who was killed on Feb. 25, lived in Philadelphia and was employed by Ferguson Contracting Inc. of Yardley, Pa. The company has not been available for comment since the accident.

Two other workers were on the balcony on the eighth floor when it collapsed, but they suffered only minor injuries and were treated at the scene. Pereira died when an eighth-floor, concrete balcony on the north side of the South Tower collapsed onto the balcony below it on the seventh floor.

Kustera Bernard & Fox (KB&F) Engineering conducted an inspection of the balconies. According to a report to the city dated March 13, KB&F “was requested to provide our professional opinion as to whether it is safe for people to return to the South Tower and whether access can be allowed back on the ground level directly below the shored balconies.”

The report continued, “Based on our visual assessment, the existing building has not been compromised due to the collapse of the balcony and the structural integrity of the building remains intact as it was prior to the balcony collapse.”

This photo shows how a balcony on the eighth floor collapsed onto the balcony directly below at the south tower of the Spinnaker condominiums.

While there is work that needs to be done and signs that there will be future repairs needed for rust stains and exposed corroded rebars, among other things, the south side balconies were deemed in “fair to good condition,” the report stated.

Engineers determined that the balconies on the south side can be used for “their intended purpose.”

However, the north side balconies will not reopen until there is further investigation into their safety.

The report reads, “The existing shoring shall remain in place, and no access shall be granted at this time. The nature of the previous repairs may have adversely impacted the load carrying capacity of these balconies. An invasive survey will be required to determine the type and extent of repair work required to restore the structural integrity of these balconies.”

The Spinnaker condominiums, a 192-unit complex, was built in the early 1970s and include twin north and south towers nine stories tall overlooking the ocean at 3500-3700 Boardwalk.

Each condo has a balcony facing the ocean, while most of the three-bedroom units also have a larger balcony on the side of the building, according to a chronology of the Spinnaker’s construction history at It was one of the side balconies that collapsed on the eighth floor of the south tower.

An aerial view shows the north and south towers of the Spinnaker Condominiums.

While the balconies were shored up after the collapse, KB&F noted that some owners or members of the public may still have some concerns.

“At this time, KB&F has no structural concerns regarding the use of the ground level area directly below the shored balconies,” the report noted. “We understand, however if ownership or others prefer to limit access to this area for other reasons.”

The Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA), a federal agency, is conducting an investigation.

Although the cause of the collapse has not yet been determined, OSHA spokeswoman Leni Fortson said in an email in February that concrete work was being done on the balconies when the accident occurred.

OSHA has up to six months to perform the investigation into the collapse and release the findings.