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3 injured in St. Johns County deck collapse



ST. JOHNS COUNTY, Fla. - The St. Johns County Fire Rescue Department responded to a deck collapse in Ponte Vedra Beach Thursday morning.

The deck collapse happened at about 9:45 a.m. in the 2800 block of South Ponte Vedra Boulevard, just south of Palm Valley Road and in the Guana Tolomato Matanzas National Reserve, according to a SJCFR Facebook post. 

Crews found a residential deck that had fallen about 9 feet.

Inspectors say faulty construction may be the main cause of the deck collapse, which sent three people to Flagler Hospital. 

A family in town for the week gathered for pictures when the deck gave way. Four people – two adults and two children – were on the deck at the time.

The St. Johns County building officer tells Action News the part of the deck that collapsed was added after the home was built and was not constructed properly. An early check of records shows there’s no permit for that work. The house hasn’t been inspected since it was built in 1975. 

"When you rent a place, you gotta check it out for yourself, because you never know what you're going to get," said witness Lindsay Gaines. "It's sad, you know. People come on vacation to have a good time, and unfortunately, I realize the elements make these decks go quickly, but it’s scary."

The family tells Action News the family's loved ones should be released from the hospital soon. The county plans to meet with the homeowner to discuss the home’s construction.