Helicopter crash building remains on schedule
Construction of Vauxhall Tower is expected to be delayed by no more than two weeks following the crash of a helicopter into a crane on the 50-storey building in heavy fog on Wednesday.
The crash killed two people and injured 13. A spokesman for developer Berkeley Group said checks carried out on the building had found no issues following the impact. “The building’s absolutely fine. We’ve had engineers in to check it. We expect to be back to full strength on site on the development within a fortnight – it’s highly unlikely the construction timetable will be put back as a result,” he told Building magazine.
Meanwhile, the largest crane in the UK has been brought down from the north of England to help dismantle the damaged crane, Construction News reported.
The collision sent burning debris flying down on rush-hour commuters below and 600 construction workers were evacuated from the building.
Mayor of London Boris Johnson promised a review the lighting of cranes and tall buildings in the capital following the crash. He told reporters: “We are very confident that the crane is now secure and that that problem will be sorted out shortly.
“There are all sorts of questions that are being asked now, about tall buildings, about lighting, about fog, about air traffic going into Battersea heliport, but these are questions that hopefully the CAA will learn the answers to shortly.”
The main contractor on the scheme, Brookfield Multiplex, issued a short statement. It said: “Brookfield Multiplex is working closely with the emergency services, the Health and Safety Executive and crane specialists to ensure that the damaged crane sections are secured and then removed safely.”
Pilot Pete Barnes died in the crash as did bystander Matthew Wood, 39, from Sutton, south London, who was on his way to work in Vauxhall.
According to regulations issued by the Civil Aviation Authority, structures above a height of 150m must be lit at their apex and along the length of the tower, at maximum intervals of 52m.
Meanwhile, crane driver Nicki Biagioni said it was only because he did not wake up on time that he was not in the cab at the time of the incident.