We all complain quite regularly about the raft of health and safety figures that exist in this country. We often say that they hinder jobs getting done and only serve to get in the way. However, there has been a very sad reminder on 30th August of why these health and safety measures are in place.
A woman outside 5 Hanover Square, Hanover Street, Mayfair has been killed by a window that fell from the building. According to BBC reports, the woman was simply having her lunch outside the building at 11:30am, when the 10ft x 10ft (3m) wooden window blew off the building, crushing the woman underneath. Despite the best efforts of emergency services, she was pronounced dead at the seen, much to the horror of passers by and those who rang the emergency services and tried to help the lady.
According to the Construction Enquirer: Eye-witnesses said the window frame was propped-up against a wall prior to installation on the 5 Hanover Square building.
The BBC are reporting that scaffolding had been removed from the building a few weeks prior to this incident. So you have to ask the question if this contributed to the incident.
The 6-storey building is being renovated by specialist contractor Westgreen Construction and was due to be completed next month, though this is highly unlikely now.
As much as we all hate health and safety regulations and the extra time it adds on to a job, it is incidents exactly like this which is the reason why they are there. This poor woman has died, possibly due to lack of scaffolding or bad luck. No matter how you look at it, such a massive window should never have been left in a position where it could have been blown or knocked over onto a pedestrianized area like it did on this occasion.