DOLE halts MDC work at Taguig City construction site after accident kills 2 workers, injures 11 others
Labor and Employment Secretary Rosalinda Dimapilis-Baldoz yesterday urged anew building developers, construction companies, and their subcontractors not to take lightly nor disregard construction safety, but ensure that their workplaces are healthful and safe.
“Safety and health in construction is no trivial matter. It is a matter of life and death. Again, I urge our developers, construction companies, including their contractors and sub-contractors, to seriously mind their workers’ safety by complying strictly with OSH regulations and adhering fully to accepted construction standards,” said Baldoz.
She issued the call after two workers died yesterday while 11 others were injured in construction site accident in Taguig City.
“This fatal accident, the second to occur this year in a construction site, reminds us how hazardous construction work is, and therefore, we have to really pay attention to the safety and health not only in construction sites, but in all workplaces,” Baldoz noted.
“I condole with the families of the dead and injured workers. I assure them of our assistance. I also assure them we will those accountable for the accident answerable for this unnecessary, and totally avoidable, accident,” she added.
Near the end of last month, a wall of a warehouse being built in Guiguinto, Bulacan collapsed, sending to their deaths a seven-year old child, a pregnant woman, and nine other workers, prompting Baldoz to order a halt in all construction activities in the site, and all other construction work of the company elsewhere strictly monitored.
In the Taguig City accident, Bureau of Working Condition Director Catherine Legados-Parado reported to Baldoz that initial investigation showed the two victims died on the spot when a shoring on the second floor of a building safe on which concrete was being poured collapsed. Aside from the fatalities, 11 others were injured and brought to the hospital.
“Concrete pouring started at midnight the other night, and continued until 8:30 A.M. yesterday. The workers who got killed were at the bottom of the shoring serving as look-outs,” Parado said.
She identified the site as the West Super Block Project on 5th Avenue corner 28th Street, Taguig City, and the structural work sub-contractor as Fastem Construction, Inc.
In another report, DOLE National Capital Region Director Alex Avila, who immediately sent investigators at the scene of the accident, said the scaffolding and the floor slab of the building, called the Suite, collapsed.
“The general contractor is the Makati Development Corporation. It has an approved Construction Safety and Health Program that the DOLE approved on 24 January 2015,” he said.
“Our occupational safety and health investigators had already served our Work Stoppage Order and we have met with the MDC’s safety officer. A conference is already set for tomorrow (today) at the DOLE-NCR. We will find out the cause of the accident as soon as possible and we will identify those accountable,” Avila said.
Mindful of the situation of the families of the two workers who died and of the injured, Baldoz directed the Directors Avila and Parado to fast track the investigation and ensure that the workers get all the benefits due them. She also directed them to coordinate their action with the Occupational Safety and Health Center and Employees Compensation Commission, particularly on the delivery of employee compensation benefits.
“Health and safety is crucial in attaining productivity in the workplace, but more so, the rights at work of the workers which calls for a safe environment to prevent occupational injuries, fatalities, and including days and income loss brought about by accidents,” Baldoz said.