Monday, October 26, 2020
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One dead, two seriously injured after ceiling collapse at Curtin Uni

One dead, two seriously injured after ceiling collapse at Curtin Uni
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One person died in the ceiling collapse. Photo / Supplied

One person has died and two young men have been seriously injured after a glass ceiling caved in at a new construction area at Curtin University in Western Australia.

It is understood the deceased man was an apprentice aged in his 20s.

A St John Ambulance spokeswoman told the NCA NewsWire two men aged in their 20s had been rushed to Royal Perth Hospital with multiple injuries.

A Department of Fire and Emergency Services spokeswoman said those two men had been trapped in the rubble and firefighters had to free them.

The collapse happened at the Bentley campus just after 12.30pm on Tuesday.

Glass was “flying everywhere” after the collapse of the ceiling, which is about 30m high, and some construction workers reportedly had to be stopped from trying to go in to help their injured colleagues.

Dozens of shocked construction workers gathered on the lawn outside the fallen structure and watched on in desperation.

Electrical Trades Union official Damian Clancey was onsite at the time and described it as a “massive crashing sound” and a “tremendous noise”.

“There’s a gap between each individual panel, so they were effectively doing I guess what you would call roof plumbing work where they were sealing gaps, putting in flashings, otherwise you’d have rain pouring down through it,” he told 6PR radio.

The building that gave way is currently under construction. Photo / via Twitter
The building that gave way is currently under construction. Photo / via Twitter

One person at the university, who wanted to remain anonymous, told the NCA NewsWire she heard a “boom sound” while she was having her lunch at the other side of the campus.

“I didn’t think much of it. Then I was meditating and I could hear all the sirens,” she said.

A Curtin University spokesperson confirmed the collapse happened at building 418, which was currently under construction, and the site was being managed by Lend Lease.

“We have been advised that no Curtin students or staff were involved in the incident,” the spokesperson said in a statement.

“Our thoughts are with all impacted by this accident.”

The building, which is located at the northern end of the campus, is part of a project called The Exchange, which includes a hotel, student accommodation and retail space.

Curtin University also sent a text alert to all students after the collapse that read: “There has been an accident on the construction site of Building 418. Emergency services personnel are on site. Please avoid the area and avoid University Boulevard.”

Four WorkSafe officers have also been sent to the site.





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