Head Of Training, The Healthy Work Company

July 7, 2016

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Five men die at recycling site (UPDATED)

The scene in Aston Church Road, Nechells - Credit: West Midlands Police

The scene in Aston Church Road, Nechells – Credit: West Midlands Police

The BBC has reported that five men have died in an accident at a recycling site in Birmingham, with a sixth man sustaining a broken leg. It is understood that the HSE has been informed and “officers are at the scene”.

Police were called to Hawkeswood Metal in the Neachells area of the city shortly before 09:00 BST today (7 July), the news site has reported.

It is understood that a large concrete structure, at the site on Aston Church Road, had collapsed on the men.

A spokesman for West Midlands Police said members of the emergency services attended the scene but the men were pronounced dead.

A West Midlands Ambulance Service spokesman said: “On arrival, ambulance crews found that a wall had collapsed.

“Sadly, there was nothing that could be done to save the five men who had been working next to it.”

The fire service said that the men were working next to a “large concrete structure containing metal” when it collapsed, with Chief Fire Officer Gary Taylor describing it as a “devastating incident for everyone involved”.

“Once the police have finished their initial examination of the scene, our absolute priority will be to ensure that the bodies of those who have lost their lives are recovered in the most timely and safe way possible, and with the utmost dignity and respect.” he said.

“The scene is an extremely challenging one, involving significant tonnage of concrete and metal and a structure that is still unstable.

“We have an assertive recovery plan in place and expect this operation to take several hours.”

Credit: West Midlands Police

Credit: West Midlands Police

Det Supt Mark Payne said: “We are still in the very early stages of this investigation to determine exactly what happened this morning.

“Sadly five people have lost their lives and we have several teams of specialist officers supporting their families at this time.

“This has been a very traumatic incident for those who were at the site this morning and we will continue to work alongside the HSE and the other emergency services at the scene.”

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Steve G
Steve G
7 years ago

My thoughts and prayers go out to the people, their family, their friends, and the community. Also to the emergency services.

7 years ago

thoughts are with their families now.

Robert Addenbrooke
Robert Addenbrooke
7 years ago

After seeing the events of the last year i think its about time all enforcing authorities take a review of their inspection protocols, when risk assessments came in the nineties many Fire and H&S officers advisers had concerns how people would cope with the change in response to risk assessment. How many more people are going to die or injured before some one realise that a more prescriptive approach is required, you don’t have to rewrite legislation just use the previous legislation like the Fire Precautions Act. Bob Addenbrooke

Darren Broadhead
Darren Broadhead
7 years ago

A needless tragedy, taking the lives of 5 men and impacting on families, colleagues and the local community. The tragic personal loss may develop into a broader loss if the business ceases trading, with employment opportunities lost and contribution to the local economy removed. The responsibility for managing the safety of structures can sometimes be unclear, often lost between the role of landlords and tenants. Or there is uncertainty about whether it is a Health & Safety issue or maybe better dealt with by an engineering team. Regardless of who owns the topic, implementing formal and informal inspection programmes is… Read more »