A building site in Dickson where a 20-year-old fell three storeys on Friday had met all safety standards in prior audits, the head of WorkSafe ACT says.
ACT work safety commissioner Greg Jones said construction work on the DKSN development was unlikely to recommence for several days after a prohibition order was placed on the site.
Safety checks of the site carried out by WorkSafe in the wake of Friday's incident identified several workplace safety breaches, including further fall from height risks, fire safety issues and electrical safety concerns.
The building site had met all safety standards in prior audits.
Mr Jones said the 20-year-old male scaffolder was in a serious but stable condition, with fractures to his ankles, legs, pelvis and arms.
"Surviving a fall of 10 to 12 metres is an absolute miracle, given that half of the falls from three metres, based on injury statistics, can result in a fatality," Mr Jones said.
"The preliminary indication is that he doesn't have any major brain damage.
"He's still in intensive care and he's undergoing more tests. He's not completely out of danger yet."
The head of WorkSafe said the safety issues that led to the prohibition notice weren't a direct contributor to Friday's fall.
The scaffolder fell from the third storey at the southern end of the Challis Street constriction site.
It is not known whether the worker was from Canberra, but his family are from interstate and have been by his side in hospital.
Assistant secretary of the Construction, Foresty, Maritime, Mining and Energy Union ACT branch, Zach Smith, said there was concern over a number of serious workplace incidents across Canberra in recent weeks.
"As we're coming into Christmas [and] the new year, there's a push to getting things done and longer hours, and there's more pressure for work to be done," Mr Smith said.
"We've got much broader concerns with the industry at large, and there's been a number of serious incidents in the last fortnight in the ACT construction industry."
Safety checks were carried out on the weekend, and investigations into the incident were likely to take several months.
Mr Jones said interviews with workers and contractors would take place in coming days.
"It's a fairly complex investigation and likely to take several months, but we'll try and make it as quick as possible, so that any concerns about safety we can implement with other building sites about town," Mr Jones said.
"Work will be allowed to recommence when safety issues are fully rectified, and WorkSafe will will do a fully safety audit to make sure it's safe to return.
"I imagine that will take several days."
Talks are still ongoing between WorkSafe and union officials as well as contractors on the site.
Mr Smith said while the Dickson construction site had met safety standards at previous inspections, conditions could change quickly.
"It's not a static workplace and just because something is safe one day doesn't mean things haven't changed or there are other high-risk factors," he said.
"The worker has had a lucky escape. After a 10 metre fall, you don't just dust yourself off and go back to work."
Doma, the development group behind the Dickson site, said it had been speaking with building contractor Bloc about steps being taken to manage on-site issues.
Doma's general manager of development, Gavin Edgar, said the company had been regularly briefed on the matter by the builder.