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“Building failure is a defect or imperfection, deficiency or fault in a building element or component. It may also be as a result of omission of performance. The degree of building failure can therefore be related to the extent or degree of deviation of a building from the “as – built” state which is in most cases represent the acceptable standard within the neighborhood, locality, state or country.”[a]

Deviation is a divergence of the value of a quantity from a standard or reference value. Deviation is generally used to indicate a divergence from what was originally intended. [b] Deviation when referring to building failure could mean multiple things such as ignoring building codes, the building swaying more than it should due to unexpected wind loads, or something as simple as constructing a building and ignoring some small details from the original design. Most building failures are deviations they are circumstances that were not intended or accounted for. 

However, deviation is not all bad. The Leaning Tower of Pisa, as seen in the first picture was not originally intended to lean at an angle, but if the deviation had not occured the tower would not have been as famous as it is today.

Click for Video of Menara Umno’s tower-top  collapse which was later suspected of failing because the architect confessed that he had deviated from the building codes. [c] The Menara Umno’s lightning arrestor and cocrete mast from the top of the 21-story building collapsed as seen in the second picture above.