The Fayette Citizen-News Page
Wednesday, August 26, 1998
PTC building official featured in 'This Old House' magazine

Staff Writer

Peachtree City building official Tom Carty is featured in the July/August 1998 edition of "This Old House" magazine, read throughout the United States and Canada.

In an article titled "Building a Safe Deck," Carty is referred to as a "crusader for safer decks" who makes sure prospective deck builders understand every detail of a deck model in his office before issuing them a permit.

Look under the deck at its attachment to the main beam, Carty said, for bolts and flashing. He also suggests testing the deck-to-house connection of beam and wall for rotting by how easily a pocketknife penetrates them. Also, if the deck is bolted to the house but there is a gap in the joint, the bolts could be working loose or were never attached to anything structural.

Peachtree City construction company owner Jim O'Brien was also featured in the article, describing a 7-year-old deck where the bolt holes allowed water seepage in the deck-to-house joint, causing extensive rotting.

The article recounts instances of improperly attached decks collapsing, killing and injuring party guests enjoying the otherwise sturdy structures. Most at-risk decks are attached with nails instead of bolts or attached only through the house's exterior siding, not to any substantial structures beneath.

Carty says he bought "about 750 copies" of the magazine to send to friends and family, and has received a call from ABC News, who may use his in a report of their own. He was also commended in the Building Official Association of Georgia's latest newsletter.

He tries to be modest, but has a hard time containing his excitement. "I'm world famous for at least 13 seconds," Carty said. "I'm working on my 15 minutes."

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