Alarming month for scaffolding collapses around the world
4th October 2018
Late August and September highlighted the vast importance of scaffolding safety as four major scaffolding collapses across the globe has sadly left five dead and many others injured. Below we take a look at each of the collapses.
Scaffolding collapses worldwide
Two people lost their lives and one has been severely injured following a scaffold collapse in Taiwan in late August. The collapse was caused by strong winds that hit the scaffolding erected on a 20ft building that was under construction, pulling it away from the building and subsequently causing the scaffolding to fall to the ground, burying three people passing by the site on the street below. Two of the three people, a mother and son, were pronounced dead upon reaching the hospital, whilst the third was described as in a serious condition.
On 29th August, construction workers on a new hotel close to Disney World fell six floors when the scaffolding on which they were working on collapsed, sadly losing their lives from the fall. A third man was able to pull himself to safety, with a further 18 workers escaping without injury. An investigation is now underway to uncover the cause of the collapse.
A rather dramatic video was released on 17th September which showed the precise moment that scaffolding on a high-rise building in Hong Kong collapsed in the midst of one of the most powerful typhoons that the region has seen in decades. Luckily there were no injuries reported, but the incident highlights the importance of assessing scaffolding during extreme weather. Take a look at the video below.
The 18th September saw a scaffolding collapse in Madrid, killing one person and injuring a further eleven. The scaffolding was erected on the Ritz Hotel, as renovations were carried out. It was reported that at least three people had to be pulled from the rubble of the collapse which brought down not only scaffolding, but some of the building’s structure also.
With temperatures beginning to drop and with storms beginning to hit, it is essential that scaffolding professionals understand how to safely erect, inspect and maintain a safe scaffolding environment, for both workers and the public.
NASC, the UK scaffolding industry’s trade body, produces and maintains a large library of scaffolding guidance material and amongst this are the publications TG20:13 and TG4:19 ‘Anchorage Systems for Scaffolding’. TG20 can be purchased from NASC’s online shop and TG4:19 is available for free download.
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