PS Arumonyang blames Pangani building accident on weathered scaffolding

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The Principal Secretary of the State Department of Public Works Joel Arumonyang has announced measures construction workers should heed when performing their duties.

These measures are meant to protect the worker from occupational hazards such as the incident that was witnessed on Saturday in Nairobi’s Pangani area where 4 people were killed and 8 others badly injured.

According to a statement issued by the State Department, the workers were working on a badly weathered Scaffold on the Bajuu Tower designed to hold 17 floors.

4 people dead, 8 injured after scaffolding collapses at Pangani building[Photo: Courtesy]

“The workers were operating from a timber platform supported by a scaffold made of old wooden planks.

“Due to weather elements, the structure had become weak and unsound, and could no longer support the weight of the workers, equipment and materials.

“As work progressed, the scaffold collapsed from the 10th floor up, and fell onto the adjacent property, taking down the workers with it.” Read the statement.

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The PS also indicated that at the time of the collapse, the workers were not in their protective gear as required by the Occupational Health and Safety standards.

“It was observed that on the day of the incident, the construction workers lacked personal protective equipment, especially helmets and safety harnesses.

“The scaffolding structure also lacked proper maintenance and thus its collapse was imminent.”

PS Arumonyang has since stated that those responsible for the accident will face the law.

“A multi-agency inspection and assessment of the site will be conducted forthwith, and action taken on any parties found culpable in the witnessed casualties”

According to PS Arumonyang, all persons working on construction sites must heed the following:
a. Construction workers working at height are advised to work on platforms and
scaffolds that meet the approved safety and design standards;
b. Regulations about the safety of works at height should be strictly adhered to and
the consultants involved in the supervision of such works should ensure the
temporary works used by contractors are approved;
c. Contractors must ensure construction workers adhere to the safety standards;
d. Developers and contractors bear the greatest responsibility to provide a healthy and
safe working environment for their workers.

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