Burst pipe floods condo garage damaging dozens of vehicles
City News Toronto
Natalie Duddridge and Toronto Staff
09 March 2015

Water pouring out of a burst pipe at a Bay Street condo, Mar. 8, 2015. CITYNEWS

At least two dozen vehicles are total write-offs after a massive flood at a downtown condo.

A sprinkler pipe located on one of the lower levels of a parking garage at 1121 Bay Street burst around 4 p.m. on Thursday.

Building management said it took the city 10 hours to respond to the call and turn off the water. By that time there was about 15 feet of water in the lower level of the parking garage.

‘we’re having crisis like this all over so just give us some time.’

“The city, unfortunately, was not helpful,” assistant property manager Moustafa Omar told CityNews. “They said ‘we’re having crisis like this all over so just give us some time.’”

City officials denied management’s claim of how long it took for them to respond to the call.

They told CityNews the water break was on the fire line, a private pipe, and that crews responded to shut off the water but were delayed in shutting the water off was because the valve was buried. In order to turn it off, they said an emergency assessment was needed to be done then the ground needed to be excavated.

The water level reached this high.

Anthony Niro with ORN Contractors said when his workers arrived to begin pumping water out of the underground parking garage, all of the vehicles on the bottom level were submerged. Water was also cut off to the entire building.

“I can just imagine it must be rough living without water and your car being submerged,” Niro said. “I think that (the vehicles) are write-offs.”

Pumps ran constantly for several days to get the water out so workers could access the mechanical room in order restore water to the rest of the building, according to Niro.

neighbours complained

Some residents in neighbouring condos complained to CityNews about the noise.

“Unfortunately residents from the neighbourhood were giving us some grief. We do understand that this is causing noise issues, they can’t sleep,” Omarsaid. “What can we do? We just hope that they don’t go through what we’ve been through.”

Niro said crews should be finished working by Monday. There has been no word on when water will be restored to the building.


Burst pipes
Over the last year, but more often in January and February 2015, I heard more and more about very serious water leaks in large condo towers due to burst pipes. How serious? Seventy-five owners had to evacuate their units for several months, floods coming down 48 floors, putting all elevators out of commission and flooding cars on the third level of the parking garage—that serious.

There are four common reasons:
Lack of maintenance. Old pipes are not getting replaced as the regularly scheduled preventive maintenance was not getting done.
Sloppy work. When work is done in the parking garage levels and in the maintenance rooms, the insulation that was removed may not be re-installed.
Work that had been scheduled and paid for was not done. No one was checking to see if plumbers actually did what they were paid to do.
The very cold weather in January and February 2015.

It is impossible to get good information on how often this is happening because the condo's management and the boards keep everything a secret.

Wouldn't want potential buyers to be fully informed buyers, now would we?

top  contents  chapter  previous  next