Arona says evacuated El Fraile apartment block is in good health with just one pillar needing immediate treatment before residents can return home

Photo: Arona Ayuntamiento.

Updated 20 August: Arona Ayuntamiento says that the problem that has been identified by technicians shows that the damage is restricted to a pillar in the basement which has deteriorated over time through oxidation, so the problem is localised and not structural. None of the other columns or floors show any symptoms of fatigue. As such, the council will issue the resolution tomorrow authorizing the owners to begin work. The first part of the works to treat and reinforce the pillar should take a couple of weeks and at that point owners should be able to return home, the council says. Subsequently, the other pillars will have to be strengthened for future security even though they aren’t a problem at present. Most significantly, no cracks are visible in any part of the building, something that the Urban Councillor Luis Garcìa said was a pleasant surprise, and showed that the property was in generally good condition.

Updated 19 August: Arona muncipal technicians have visited the apartment block along with experts for the insurance company in order to establish the works required to make the building safe. The council says that during the visit the central pillar of the ground floor was determined clearly to be the most affected and in need of reinforcement; it is thought that the occupants could then return, in around a fortnight, while further subsequent works expected to take several months focus on related aspects of the structure in the same area.

Original post 17 August: Arona Ayuntamiento says that during the night some 20 residents were evacuated from a building in Calle Fuerteventura, El Fraile, that they had reported feeling as though it were shaking. Following technicians judging it unsafe, the council says that it has equipped the municipal sports pavillion for the residents of the eight apartments to stay temporarily: a ninth apartment is unoccupied.

The 15 adults, 5 children and 5 pets were allowed in to collect immediately-needed personal belongings, and this morning, the Ayuntamiento’s Urbanismo and Emergencias services have confirmed visual structural damage and water seepage, and the building has now been cordoned off entirely. 

The council says that in such cases of private buildings it has power only to view, assess and cordon off if a risk to public health is established. This is the case in this situation, and thereafter, the council must liaise with the Community of Owners for technical evaluations and decisions for any repairs or corrections needed. Meanwhile the building remains evacuated and roped off to all.

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