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Fatal tower crane collapse

8. July 2012 | Comments (0)

A tower crane collapsed yesterday in Dallas, Texas while being dismantled, killing two erectors.

Pictures from the scene yesterday

The incident occurred on the University of Texas at Dallas (UTD) in Richardson. Crews were in to remove two the tower cranes, following the topping–out ceremony for the new Arts & Technology building on Thursday.

The crane landed on the completed structure

Reports claim that strong gusts of wind rolled in on what had been a bright clear start to the day - with speeds of between 35 and 50mph. The result caused the higher of the two cranes that was being dismantled first to go over and it is understood - but not confirmed - that the deceased men- Thomas Fairbrother, 58, and Terry Weaver,50 - were on the crane at the time. Acording to the university the two were employed by Harrison Crane and Hoist.
Note that while some news stations have linked this company to Florida based mobile crane company Harrison Crane - there is absolutely no connection whatsoever. Harrison Crane & Hoist is believed to be a local business based in Grand Prairie - the same town as Lewis Crane that went bankrupt in 2009.

OSHA has been called in to investigate and neither the school or the main contractor – Hunt Construction Group wished to comment in any detail on what happened until at least the preliminary investigation has been carried out. Both have issued statements of condolence to the families affected.

Hunt said: “Unfortunately, an accident occurred on the UT Dallas campus Saturday afternoon, which is currently under investigation. Hunt extends our deepest sympathies to the families of the workers who lost their lives. We will provide additional information when it becomes available.”

TD topping out
The last beam, painted orange and covered in signatures tops out the external construction

A later statement added: "Hunt Construction Group wishes to thank the media for allowing project personnel to deal with the accident that occurred on the UT Dallas campus on Saturday, July 7th that resulted in two deaths."

"Hunt and all parties involved with the construction of the project are working closely with OSHA and the local authorities during the ongoing investigation."


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