Structural Failures With the Highest Death Tolls

Structural failures aren’t a very common occurrence now-a-days and used to occur far more often before building codes and safety regulations began to be enforced in the late 19th century. But when they do happen in the present day, how deadly are they? Even with our current regulations and building codes that must be followed, these structural failures can still be catastrophic and cost many people their lives. In fact, five of the thirty deadliest structural failures in history occurred in just the past decade. The Rana Plaza collapse that happened in 2013 and killed 1,134 people was one of the more recent catastrophes on the list and turned out to be the seventh deadliest in history. The cause of this deadly collapse was the building owners choosing to ignore cracks that had formed in the building and ordered their employees back to work. The building collapsed the following day as employees were returning to work.


Which structural failure was the deadliest in history? The structural failure with the highest death toll dates all the way back to 27 C.E. when twenty-thousand people were killed as the Fidenae Amphitheater collapsed under the weight of too many spectators. Once again human error was the cause as the amphitheater had been cheaply constructed from wood and was not built to withstand the weight. You’ll notice that human error, ignorance, or greed was the cause behind many of the deadly disasters that made the list. Buildings aren’t the only structures that have catastrophically failed throughout history, the list of deadliest structural failures also includes various bridges and dams that have collapsed and led to high death tolls. Which structural failure are you surprised to see had such deadly results?

Featured image is public domain.

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