Tradesman loses life in building collapse
A 21-year-old man plunges 15 metres to his death, another man seriously injured in a dramatic collapse of a two-storey building in Melbourne’s south-east.PT1M50S http://www.canberratimes.com.au/action/externalEmbeddedPlayer?id=d-2se4u 620 349 August 22, 2013
A 21-year-old man has plunged 15 metres to his death and another man has been seriously injured in a dramatic collapse of a two-storey building in Melbourne’s south-east.
Police say the top and mezzanine floors of the Hawthorn Road shopfront, in Caulfield South, gave way shortly after 10am trapping the two men under the rubble.
The deceased is understood to be a 20-year-old and his colleague, a 48-year-old subcontractor, who was on Thursday listed in a serious condition at the Alfred hospital.
A still from Nine News, showing a man being attended to by paramedics at the scene of the Caulfield Wall collapse. Photo: Screengrab, courtesy Channel Nine
Police believe building materials fell through the top floor of the building, which was undergoing extensive renovations, and onto the middle level, which then collapsed onto the workers.
It is unclear what the materials were.
Construction at the site began in late April. The site has a narrow shopfront and is between a pizzeria and a beauty salon.
Emergency services workers at the scene of the wall collapse in Caulfield. Photo: Screengrab, courtesy Channel Nine
According to a Metropolitan Fire Brigade spokesman, three other electricians were standing on the ground floor when the building gave way and managed to jump clear of the roiling mass of bricks and debris.
An Ambulance Victoria spokesman said paramedics were called to the site about 10am and it became clear to rescue workers there was little anyone could do for the younger man.
The other man was freed from the collapsed two-storey building in a joint effort by paramedics and the Metropolitan Fire Brigade.
The scene of the building collapse in Caulfield, where one man has died and another has been left badly injured. Photo: Pat Scala
Emergency workers and passersby worked frantically to remove the rubble, their efforts rewarded when the man was finally pulled free - albeit with fractures in both arms and a leg, and with heavy cuts and bruising.
Nearby resident Nick Love, 21, was walking past when he was asked to help with the rescue.
He said he and emergency workers worked for about 10 minutes to pull wood from on top of the men.
‘‘Once we got to the [younger] guy, he was under a lot of stuff and I just stepped back and let the paramedics do their thing.
"It didn’t seem like a big deal until all the news [crews] rocked up."
WorkSafe inspectors and an investigator attended the scene along with 10 MFB units, including an emergency rescue crew.
Hawthorn Road is closed in both directions between Dover Street and Aileen Avenue and police are urging motorists to avoid the area.
The building under construction is believed to be a shop. Photo: Pat Scala
Officials from the Construction, Forestry, Mining and Energy Union were also at the scene, though it is understood the building site was not union affiliated.
Police will prepare a report for the coroner.
In March, a collapse of the wall at the Carlton & United Breweries site in Swanston St, Carlton, claimed the lives of Melbourne siblings Alexander, 19, and Bridget Jones, 18, and French researcher Marie-Faith Fiawoo, 33.
Mr Jones is believed to have tried to shield his sister from falling bricks and debris when the wall gave way with no warning.
Meanwhile, three teenage students at a Catholic high school in Western Sydney were injured last week following the collapse of a concrete balustrade.
Paramedics were called to Nagle College at Blacktown and transferred two of the girls to hospital.
with Adrian Lowe and AAP