Western Canada Theatre was in Sagebrush Theatre in advance of debuting its latest production Buddy: The Buddy Holly Story when one of its staffers noticed a crack in one of the roof trusses.
Following the discovery, the building was closed as a safety precaution and the theatre company immediately moved its production to the Coast Kamloops Hotel and Conference Centre.
Kamloops This Week looked into inspections of the busy local theatre and whether the structural issue deemed to be a safety concern could have been caught earlier.
SD73 facilities manager Art McDonald told KTW the school district, which owns with the City of Kamloops the 685-seat theatre at 1300 Ninth Ave., maintains and upkeeps its buildings as required.
Preventive maintenance, for example, is conducted on heating and cooling systems.
However, there is no formal inspection process.
“It’s more sort of when things are noticed,” McDonald said.
He said Western Canada Theatre, which manages the facility’s bookings, is in the building “all the time” to notice potential issues, as was the case when WCT spotted the cracked roof truss.
The same applies for other SD73 buildings and McDonald noted the school district has a lot of buildings to look after.
“We have groups in these buildings and they notice things and that’s our system,” he said.
“Similar at the schools. When custodians and staff notice things and our staff are out doing work, they’ll look around.”
City of Kamloops development director Marvin Kwiatkowski said inspections are not required of existing buildings, even if they are accessed by the general public.
Instead, building owners conduct their own due diligence, he said, noting large organizations generally have checks in place.
Kamloops Fire Rescue conducts annual health and safety inspections, but structural issues are not addressed at that time. KFR inspections cover items like lighting, exit lighting, access, egress and life safety.
“Large organizations have programs in place,” Kwiatkowski said.
“The school district would probably do checks and maintenance. We do that with our bridges, right? We do that with our buildings, generally, and our bridges. We have an inspection done.
“So that’s kind of how it works. It’s the owner that would be responsible.”
McDonald said it is “hard to say” whether the crack could have been caught earlier had the building been inspected.
“I don’t know that an inspection would have caught it any quicker,” he said.