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New collapse triggers Ha Noi crane survey

Update: May, 19/2015 - 09:05
Cranes at a construction site in Ha Noi. The city authorities plan to inspect cranes at construction sites across the city. — VNA/VNS Photo Huy Hung

HA NOI (VNS) — After a crane collapsed last Wednesday at the Cau Giay Nhon- Ha Noi station site, damaging two buildings and two homes, and injuring a 26-year-old motorbike driver and a pregnant woman, Ha Noi authorities decided to inspect cranes at construction sites across the city.

That wasn't the first crane accident in recent weeks. Just a few days before, 680kg of steel sheeting fell from a crane as it was being hoisted into the air at the Station Four site. No one was injured.

Deputy director of the Construction Department, Tran Viet Trung, said investors and managers at the construction sites failed to obey regulations on crane use, which put pedestrians in harm's way.

Ha Van Banh, a restaurant owner pointed to two cranes at the HACC1 Complex construction site on Le Van Luong Street, jutting out above the heads of street pedestrians, and expressed his worries.

He said whenever the cranes are operating, especially when moving construction materials, people under them had to look up to monitor their safety.

The same situation can be found at many other construction sites on streets such as Hoang Cau Street or in the Dai Kim Ward.

According to the city's inspection team, the crane used at the HACCI Complex Building posed a threat to people walking below because of how far it is jutting out of the construction site.

No approval

Nguyen Quang Huy, deputy head of the Technical Management and Quality Assessment Unit at the department said Ha Noi Construction Company No.1 at the HACC1 site used the cranes for months without getting approval from authorities.

"They are not allowed to use the cranes because they failed to present adequate plans to fix and use the cranes," he said.

They also seriously violated safety regulations by operating cranes during the day, he said. Cranes that extend beyond the construction site are only permitted between 10pm and 6am.

Authorities have suspended work at the construction site and gave the investor and contractor a fine of VND30 million (US$1,428), he said.

Another troublesome construction site, the Golden Palace Project, has cranes jutting out over Le Van Luong Street and were in operation without the management board's supervision.

Deputy Director Trung said that the project will also be suspended if the investor fails to present the permits needed to use the cranes and take the necessary measures to ensure pedestrian safety. Such measures require warning signs and on-duty workers to direct pedestrians at a minimum.

Deputy head of the assessment unit, Huy said that 19 cranes have been registered at 19 projects across the city and that inspections will continue until their locations, positioning and operations are approved.

The department will work with district authorities to institute regular supervision visits. If any projects are not adequately ensuring crane safety, they will be suspended, he said. — VNS

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