A 20-year-old Indian worker was found dead under the rubble of the Fuji Xerox Towers building in Tanjong Pagar after it collapsed during demolition works. The worker’s body was stuck under two metres of debris.
“Following an intensive search operation, a worker who was earlier reported missing was sighted to be pinned under a collapsed reinforced concrete structure at about 6 pm. The worker had no pulse and was not breathing,” stated Singapore Civil Defence Force in a statement.
Rescue workers had to cut and dig through the rubble but the weight of the concrete slab complicated efforts. The body was recovered around 9:45 pm.
Search and rescue efforts are set to continue throughout the night to ensure no person is trapped under the rubble.
Eleven emergency vehicles and 70 officers were deployed to find the worker, including rescue workers, firefighters, and medical workers.
According to the Ministry of Manpower and Building and Construction Authority, a reinforced concrete wall on the second story collapsed on the street during demolition. The wall was 10 metres long and 3.8 metres high.
“BCA has instructed the project parties to stop all construction activities and will revoke the permit for all works while investigations are ongoing. MOM has also instructed the employer of the worker to stop all works at the site,” said the statement.
The occupier of the work site is Woh Hup. Meanwhile, the worker is employed by Aik Sun Demolition and Engineering.
“We are saddened by the unfortunate incident that happened and are working closely with the relevant authorities on their investigation into the matter,” said a spokesman for Woh Hup.
“We have expressed our condolences to the family of Aik Sun’s worker and will do our best to support them in any way we can.”
The location will be redeveloped into a 47-storey mixed-use development called Newport Plaza. The developer is City Developments Limited, which said in a statement late on Thursday night that it is cooperating with the authorities on the investigation.
A representative from Aik Sun said that it needs time to find out the cause of the collapse.
According to office workers in the area, they felt tremors when the building collapsed.
“It wasn’t prolonged enough for us to panic but at the start, it felt like an earthquake. We didn’t know what happened until we went outside and saw the site,” said Mr. Lim, who was at a meeting with three colleagues during the incident.
Image Source: CNA News
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