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DOL sets up Grayston Drive bridge collapse inquiry

The SA Department of Labour set up a Johannesburg Grayston Drive bridge collapse inquiry in October 2015.

The DOL announced soon after the collapse, that a Section 32 inquiry would “dig deeper as to the causes and who is to blame for the collapse of scaffolding work into the Grayston Drive pedestrian and cyclist structural bridge collapse that led to the deaths of two people and injury to 19 others.”

Department of Labour Deputy Director-General, Aggy Moiloa said the department was duty bound in terms of the Occupational Health and Safety (OHS) Act “to investigate negligence that may have resulted in occupational injuries and deaths of workers.”

The Section 32 Inquiry “will more or less operate like the recent Tongaat Mall Structural Collapse Inquiry, and the Meyersdale House Collapse Inquiry.”

The Grayston Drive bridge collapse construction scene on the day of the disaster (eNCA).
The Grayston Drive bridge collapse construction scene on the day of the disaster (eNCA).

The 14 October 2015 incident at about 15:25, involved a project of the City of Johannesburg, and the Johannesburg Development Agency as clients, who had appointed Royal Haskoning DHV as an agent.

Murray & Roberts is the principal contractor and the supplier of material involved in an incident is Formscaff.

The matter was reported to Bramley Police Station and is being investigated. The Labour Department Chief Inspector, Tibor Szana said the presiding officer would be announced soon.

Szana said the department would not rely on hearsay, innuendos and rumours. The Inquiry may take at least six months, since there were many parties involved in the matter.

The inquiry may result in prosecution based on evidence gathered. The department has served a prohibition notice for work not to proceed on site until all safety and legislative requirements are complied with.

The Grayston Drive pedestrian and cyclist structural bridge collapse Inquiry will focus at least on these issues:

· Responsibility of the client in terms of Construction Regulations
· Responsibility of the principal constructor, and as an employer
· Responsibility of the agent on behalf of the client
· Supplier of materials
· Design.

The Commission will prepare a report of its findings and formulate recommendations to the Labour Minister and the Directorate of Public Prosecutions.

Meanwhile, reports on the Tongaat Mall Structural Collapse Inquiry, and the Meyersdal Structural Collapse Inquiry, are nearing conclusion, expected in November 2015.

*Source; SA Department of Labour Communication Directorate, Mokgadi Pela

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