It was the worst incident of its kind on the island in the last 15 years. | Majorca Daily Bulletin reporter


The head of the company which operated the bar in Playa de Palma where four people died on May 23 when the upper terrace collapsed has been arrested for his alleged involvement in the commission by omission of four gross negligence homicides and six crimes of serious injury. The arrest by the National Police has taken after the investigation into what happened has concluded. It has determined that the terrace that partially collapsed had been renovated for activities which there was no license or permit, was not reinforced and received an overload of weight that caused its collapse, the National Police reported today.

The events occurred on May 23, at around 20:20 hours in a leisure establishment on the first line of Playa de Palma, where part of the terrace where customers and staff were located collapsed. As a result, dour people died and another 14 suffered injuries of varying degrees. The investigation by the Police Homicide Group, together with technical reports from the Palma Town Hall, determined that part of a roof had collapsed, which was attached to the terrace of the premises for the operation of the business, for which no licence or permit was available.

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The structure had not been reinforced for such use and as a consequence of the modifications had been overloaded of weight. This weight, added to the structure, together with the weight of the people occupying the space at the time of the incident, caused the structure to collapse. The terrace of the restaurant-bar in the main tourist area of the city did not have a municipal activity licence to host customers, so the use of that area of the collapsed building was illegal.

As the Palma Town Hall pointed out, both the basement of the building, where a music bar was located, and the ground floor, which was used as a restaurant, did have the required licences, but not the terrace that collapsed. According to the council, the illegal terrace collapsed due to a combination of the overweight resulting from irregular building work and the overload of 21 customers who were on the first floor when the terrace collapsed.

Now the investigation has been completed, the National Police have arrested the businessman of the establishment. A 23-year-old female worker from Navarre, two German tourists aged 20 and 30 and another 44-year-old customer, a Senegalese resident of Palma, died. It was the worst incident of its kind on the island in the last 15 years. Mallorca had not experienced an event of this magnitude since 2009, when a building in the Balearic capital collapsed due to its poor condition, killing seven people.