NORTH BAY VILLAGE (CBSMiami) — Seven months after the Shuckers Bar and Grill deck collapsed into Biscayne Bay, injuring dozens, an effort to rebuild by the owners is being delayed by and insurance company.
According to our news partners, the Miami Herald, the insurance company wants to piece those frantic moments back together, piece by piece.
Barges finally began to clear the waters, last week, behind the North Bay Village restaurant. The salvaged wooden deck pieces and concrete seawall are expected to be taken to an upland warehouse. Forensics experts will then try to rebuild it in order to find out what happened.
According to the paper, several people with knowledge of the rebuilding process have confirmed the insurance company representing the restaurant convinced the owners to make and effort to clean up and restore the debris before rebuilding the deck and seawall.
Interim North Bay Village Manager Frank Rollason told the paper, “The issue is the insurance company wouldn’t let them remove the debris.” He continued,“Chris told me that’s the plan — taking the big pieces to a warehouse and putting it back together.”
Spencer Aronfeld, a personal injury attorney representing several of the victims who filed 10 civil lawsuits in Miami-Dade Circuit Court, said rebuilding the salvaged structure could give defendants an opportunity to find out what caused the collapse.
North Bay Village records show the owners of the restaurant have secured the permits necessary to rebuild the restaurant.
The interior of the bar will look similar but have a new bar and the deck over the water will remain the same size but will be made of concrete, according to the paper.
On June 13, 2013 dozens of people fell into Biscayne Bay after a section of a restaurant patio collapsed in North Bay Village.
Witnesses say people were dining and watching the Heat game at Shuckers Bar & Grill at 1819 79th Street Causeway when the structure below them gave way.
Leah Masters, a hostess at Shuckers told CBS4 News that people had just gotten to their feet to cheer a Heat basket when the deck collapsed. Masters said several patrons jumped into the water to help those who had fallen in.
Miami Fire Rescue spokesperson Lt. Iggy Carroll said up to 100 people fell into the water. Of those, 33 people were hurt, with 24 being transported to Jackson Memorial Hospital and North Shore Medical Center.
CBS4’s Brian Andrews reported the entire deck had collapsed and the Coast Guard was called in to rescue people in the water. Several divers also got into the water to look for victims.
(©2014 CBS Local Media, a division of CBS Radio Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed. CBS4 news partner The Miami Herald contributed material for this report.)