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Rigger Crushed by Steel Beam at Barangaroo

Friday, March 03, 2017

The worker who died in an accident at a construction site at Barangaroo on Thursday afternoon (2/3/17) has been named as Hunter Valley man Timothy Macpherson.

Mr Macpherson, 32, had worked as a rigger on the Barangaroo ferry hub project for several months and frequently posted pictures of the picturesque harbourside site on social media.

Investigators from SafeWork NSW are continuing to investigate the death of a man after a workplace incident at Barangaroo in central Sydney.

In one post from January, he included a picture of the barge where he would be killed. A large pylon was about to be driven into the ground with a pile driver.

About 4.25pm on Thursday, he was watching a crane as it lifted a heavy steel beam into the air, when it knocked into another beam which was sitting unsecured on top of two pylons.

The second beam toppled to the ground, hitting Mr Macpherson and leaving him with fatal injuries, the Construction Forestry Mining and Energy Union (CFMEU) said.

His workmates were immediately given counselling, as police, safety investigators and union officials tried to piece together how the tragedy unfolded.

No workers returned to the site on Thursday. CFMEU NSW secretary Brian Parker said many were "very traumatised".

He proudly chronicled developments like laying turf, building a garden, and watching his son play on the fresh grass.

The 32-year-old had worked on the construction site as a rigger for several months.

Mr Parker said there had been a spike in the amount of deaths and serious injuries on work sites around the country.

"Every nine minutes there's been a severe injury to a worker or a death. Already the death tally across the country is running at one per week," he said.

"We'll be working very closely with the police and SafeWork to find out all the issues."

NSW ministers and government agencies expressed their sadness at Mr Macpherson's death on Wednesday.

Minister for Transport and Infrastructure Andrew Constance said he was "deeply saddened" by the incident, and he trusts the parties will "co-operate fully with all investigations".

In a statement, McConnell Dowell - the company awarded the contract the build the ferry hub for Transport for NSW - said the company's thoughts are with Mr Macpherson's family.

"We are providing his employer with all the assistance they need to support his family, and all affected staff are being offered support and counselling," Australian managing director Jim Frith said in a statement.

"The full circumstances are unknown at this time and McConnell Dowell will continue to work with the authorities as they investigate the incident."

Article courtesy of The Sydney Morning Herald


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