Wednesday, September 30, 2009

Another fatal in construction site - Staying in the container office doesn't make your safe

Sep 30, 2009 Wednesday

Falling mast section kills engineer
500kg metal structure crashes into container office; co-worker injured
By Teh Joo Lin

The roof of the container office where the metal structure - a mast section - crashed into.The structure plummeted 30m when the wire rope of a tower crane hoisting it snapped. The incident happened at the construction site of an upcoming condominium, the Sui Generis, in Balmoral Road off Bukit Timah Road. -- ST PHOTO: CAROLINE CHIA
AN ENGINEER was killed and another worker seriously injured after a 500kg metal structure plummeted 30m and crashed into a container office that they were in yesterday.

This happened when the wire rope of a tower crane, hoisting the 6m-long structure, snapped. Mr Lim Boon Tiong, a 40-year-old engineering consultant with Meinhardt Singapore, was trapped in the container office. He suffered serious head injuries and was pronounced dead at the scene. His co-worker, a 41-year-old quality control consultant, was found seated nearby. His right forearm was crushed by debris and he had two deep cuts to his head. He was taken to Tan Tock Seng Hospital, where he is believed to be in a stable condition. The incident happened at about 11.30am at the construction site of an upcoming condominium, the Sui Generis, in Balmoral Road off Bukit Timah Road. Both were part of a group of nine attending a meeting inside the container office. The seven others emerged from the container shocked but otherwise unscathed.

A spokesman for the project said the site is under investigation following the incident. 'We are not in a position to release any information,' she said. The Straits Times understands that the accident happened while work was being done to elevate a mast erected alongside one of the half-built blocks. This mast allows a temporary workers' lift to go up and down the block. The structure that fell about eight storeys onto the container office was an additional section to make the mast taller. Safety experts said a crane's hoisting wires can snap for reasons that include overloading or the corrosion of the rope's inner core. The accident at Sui Generis comes at a time when the authorities are trying to improve crane safety at construction sites.

Last year, there were 162 crane- related accidents, which resulted in the deaths of five people and left 139 injured. In 2007, four men died and 107 were injured.
Following yesterday's incident, the Manpower Ministry issued a stop work order to Chiu Teng Enterprise, the main contractor at the site.


  1. hey,lousy blogger. The weight of mast falling from the tower crane mentioned in the blog is 500kg but do not tally with 300kg as indicated below the picture. Please check and review before publishing.

  2. That sounds really terrible. My condolences to the engineer's family. May his soul rest in peace.

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