Woman hit by falling bricks from crane at London building site

A 28-year-old woman is reported to be fighting for her life in hospital after being struck by bricks and debris that fell from a crane at an apartment block building site in east London yesterday.

From video showing passersby attending to the woman before police and ambulance crews arrived yesterday (Twitter/’Fahim’, @F4H1M1997)

Police in Tower Hamlets are appealing for witnesses to the horrific accident that took place at around 9.30am beside Higgins Homes’ Bow Corner development (rendered above) on Burdett Road, E3.

"One woman was out cold underneath the bricks and another woman next to her was screaming hysterically for an ambulance and looking up into the heavens," local businessman Alan Harris told The Docklands & East London Advertiser.

Passersby raced to help the woman. Video taken by witnesses showed bricks and debris scattered on the street.

The woman’s condition was "critical" yesterday, reports the BBC.

Police, two ambulance crews and London’s Air Ambulance attended the scene, with police arriving at 9.38am.

A man at the scene was also treated for shock, the Metropolitan Police said.

Higgins Homes’ construction director Steve Boreham said in a statement: "Our primary thoughts and concerns are with the lady who has been injured and those affected today.

"We are working with the Health and Safety Executive who are investigating the incident to determine the cause and will release more information as soon as it’s available. Our priority at the moment is of course to make the area safe."

Officers from Tower Hamlets CID are investigating in consultation with the Health and Safety Executive, said the Metropolitan Police.

Bow Corner is a development of 19 one, two and three bedroom apartments that is expected to be completed this year.

Top image: Artist’s render of Higgins Homes’ Bow Corner development at Burdett Road, London E3 (Higgins Homes)

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  1. Basic “law” is not to hoist material over areas where there are people below. Safety 101 (?)

  2. Will they never learn.

  3. Let’s wait until the investigation is concluded before arriving at conclusions

  4. Question. Higgins as with all main contractors/ subcontractors insist on a lifting plan, which always states that a debris net be used when lifting pallets of bricks and block.
    Clearly not working to method statement. Not to mention lifting over a public highway without any banksman.
    Hopefully the lady involved will make a full recovery

  5. This one will need to wait until the investigation. From the photos I saw, the net had been in place, and what appeared to be the correct lifting frame had been in use. There appeared to have been a failure of the cantilevered lifting ‘eye’ on the frame.

    It is to be expected that, if the site required materials to be hoisted from the roadside, that risk assessments would have driven a safe method of working.

    The difficulty, as with many of these incidents, is the length of time before the findings are made public – usually only as the result of a prosecution and possibly two years hence.

  6. This should be so easy to avoid. Tower Hamlets is such a crowded place. ‘Considerate Constructor’ as well I expect. Try calling the local authority to enforce things as I have done in the past – they don’t want to know.

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