China: Scaffold Accident Leaves Over 60 People Dead

The incident occurred yesterday November 24, 2016, at a power plant in Fengcheng city.

 

Tragedy struck in the Chinese province of Jiangxi yesterday, November 24, 2016, when a scaffold at a construction site in the city of Fengcheng in Jiangxi Province collapsed, killing at least 67 people, news agencies said. Reports said iron pipes, steel bars and plank tumbled and crushed nearly all 70 workers at the site in the country's worst work-safety accident in over two years.

Two people were injured and one other was missing. The plant’s cooling tower was being built when the scaffolding tumbled down at about 7:30 am, an official with the local Work Safety Administration, who would only give his surname Yuan, said. About 500 rescue workers, including paramilitary police officers, dug through the debris as rescue dogs sought to locate survivors or the bodies of victims. Drivers of backhoes worked hard to move wreckage to the edges of the massive round tower.

Cable News Network, CNN, reported that the platform was built around a cooling tower which was undergoing repairs. More than 200 fire fighters were deployed. CCTV showed a pile of twisted metal and dozens of rescue workers searching for victims under the rubble. In a statement, Chinese Premier, Li Keqiang, called for rescue teams to “work round the clock to save trapped people and to do all to reduce casualties.” Li Yihuang, Vice Governor of Jiangxi Province, promised that authorities will conduct an investigation and punish those found culpable.

Work on the 1,000-megawatt coal-fired power plant started in late 2015 and was expected to finish in November 2017. The Fengcheng power plant is part of a 7.67 billion Yuan (about 679,967 billion FCFA) expansion project to add two 1,000-megawatt coal-fired power units by early 2018. The plant is managed by Jiangxi Ganneng Company.

 

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