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    Spraying concrete in joint venture tunnel ends in tragedy

    A workman is reported to have died on the Crossrail Project after being struck by a section of falling concrete.

    Crossrail has confirmed that the workman was spraying concrete when a piece of concrete from the ceiling of the tunnel fell and hit him.

    The work being undertaken involves building a new crossover tunnel between two train tunnels that have already been constructed by the Crossrail boring machines.

    A Crossrail spokesperson said:

    “Sadly, at approximately 5am this morning a contractor working at our site in Fisher Street, London was fatally injured. Our first and foremost thoughts are with the family and friends affected by this. The family has been informed.

    Crossrail has suspended all work at Fisher Street and associated works across the project. A full and thorough investigation into this tragic incident is being undertaken. The Metropolitan Police and the Health and Safety Executive remain on site.

    Safety is our number one priority and Crossrail sets the most stringent safety requirements in the industry. Despite this terrible incident, Crossrail’s accident rate is below the industry average.”

    Crossrail added that a full investigation into the cause of the incident has commenced. Chief executive Andrew Wolstenholme has told Construction News the tragic death has increased the Crossrail resolve to improve safety standards across the industry adding:

    “Safety has always been, and continues to be, the number one value for Crossrail and critical to the success of the programme. There is nothing so important on Crossrail that it cannot be done safely,” Mr Wolstenholme said.

    We continue to strive to make our sites as safe as possible, improve standards across the industry and to hand it back healthier and safer than it was at the beginning. The last few days have only increased that resolve,”

    This is the first fatality to occur on the £14.8bn Crossrail project. The HSE head of construction policy, Simon Longbottom, said HSE was working with Crossrail and its contractors to “get health and safety right” and follow the zero-fatality example set by London 2012.

    Safety is the “number one priority” for everyone on project

    The deceased workman is thought to be working for BFK (Bam Nuttall, Ferrovial, Kier), was pronounced dead at the scene by doctors from London’s Air Ambulance.

    BFK is directing all enquiries to Crossrail and Crossrail has issued a statement on safety, saying:

    “Safety is the number one priority for everyone working on the project. We regard the safety of all those working on Crossrail as paramount and are committed to delivering the project to the highest standards of safety at all times.

    Before any work can take place, it is reviewed by appropriate, competent individuals, approved in advance and only allowed to start when all identified control measures are in place.

    We have put in place a strict and comprehensive reporting system. Workers are required to come forward with any concerns to ensure that they can be dealt with appropriately. Any injury, no matter how minor, must be reported and investigated to understand what caused it and to ensure that lessons can be learned across the project.

    Our health and safety statistics are better than the average for the UK construction industry. Our current Accident Frequency Rate is 0.30, meaning that there are 0.30 incidents for every 100,000 hours worked or roughly one accident for every 330,000 hours worked.”

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