Construction Worker Crushed by Falling Wall in East London

A wall that collapsed during a renovation on an east London building has resulted in the death of a man who was crushed by the falling wall.

Renovation was being conducted on a pub, turning it into apartments when a wall collapsed and killed a man at the site. It has not been confirmed whether the man was a worker or visitor to the site.

The accident at the conversion site took place on Wednesday morning, 3rd December 2014. Construction on the site began in November 2014.

The man in his thirties died at the Anchor & Hope pub conversion site in Westferry Road on the Isle of Dogs.

In an article on PPConstructionSafety.com a Metropolitan Police spokesperson explained:

fatalitieshat “Police were called at approximately 0900hrs on Wednesday, 3 December to reports of a man injured at a construction site in Westferry Road, E14.

 

“Officers, London Ambulance Service and London’s Air Ambulance attended and the man, believed aged in his 30s, died at 9.21am. Enquiries into the circumstances continue.

 

“At this early stage it is understood the man received his injuries after a wall collapsed at the scene.”

 

Source: http://www.ppconstructionsafety.com/newsdesk/2014/12/04/fatality-collapse-on-london-refurb-project/

Although the man killed was most likely a construction worker on the site, the incident reminded me of the tragic wall collapse at a construction site in Melbourne which claimed the lives of three members of the public who just happened to be in the wrong place at the wrong time.

The accident happened in March 2013 on a Grocon construction site in Swanston street. Two teenage siblings were killed as well as a Frenchwoman, when the 15 metre long section of the brick wall collapsed onto them as they walked by. Alexander Jones, Bridget Jones and Marie-Faith Fiawoo all died when the wall fell.

The prosecutor in the case against Grocon, Greg Lyon speaking for WorkCover said that the company had actually increased the risk of collapse by attaching an advertising hoarding to the wall, instead of minimising the risks, as was their responsibility. Witnesses said that the wall had wire ties that were rusted which may have also contributed to the collapse.

Heavy winds, inadequate reinforcement etc. can lead to wall collapses. Being aware of the hazards associated with construction work as well as the risks involved is a crucial aspect of construction.

The most common causes of wall collapses on construction sites are:

  • inclement weather, particularly wind
  • the foundations or temporary supports of the structure being undermined
  • lateral supports of the structure being removed
  • the structure receiving a heavy impact, or
  • any combination of factors.

In order to learn about the hazards, so that you aren’t placed at risk like the man in the East London renovation site incident, is to complete general construction safety training, known in Oz as The White Card.

The White Card is the mandatory construction induction card for workers in construction everywhere in Oz.