It took seven Herculean hours – without a pause – for the rescue unit of the Sharjah Civil Defence to recover the body of a 34-year-old Indian worker who got buried after a crane loaded with tonnes of concrete collapsed on him at a construction site in Al Nahda area on Saturday night.
The accident also caused critical injuries to a 23-year-old Pakistani worker – identified as Farasat Khan Zawaz – who is still fighting for his life in the ICU of Al Qasimi Hospital.
An official at Sharjah Civil Defence said that the accident was reported at the operations room at 5:30pm on Saturday. A team swung into action and reached the site in less than five minutes. They rushed the injured worker to Al Qasimi Hospital and admitted him in the ICU.
He said that the rescue unit of the Sharjah Civil Defence worked in cooperation with the Sharjah Police from 5:30pm to 1:00am to recover the body. The crane was huge and weighed up to several tons, which made it all the more difficult. The fallen concrete was massive as well.
Since the crane was very heavy, it had to be cut into several pieces by special tools, to reach the body. After digging deep, one of the rescue team members went down and pulled out the body.
The official stressed that owners of construction and contracting companies should ensure that security and safety requirements are applied to the construction sites before the work starts.
Most of the companies do not pay heed even if their workers do not wear safety gears – such as hand gloves and helmets – designed to protect them from injuries at workplaces. Some of them ignore the application of safety procedure – like checking validity of the equipment and cranes and other tools – to ensure that they are properly fixed to prevent collapse or any other incidents.
A source at Al Qasimi Hospital in Sharjah said that the 23-year-old injured man was in a critical condition. He will remain in the ICU under medical supervision and artificial respiration.
The Sharjah Municipality pointed out that once the police investigations into the incident are over, it will inspect the site to make sure that the company is committed to security and safety regulation. If the company does not comply, a violation and fine will be imposed on them.