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Department of Labour postpones sitting of M1/Grayston Drive inquiry to May

by Lloyd Ramutloa last modified 2017-03-14 17:14

14 March 2017

The Department of Labour wishes to announce that the sitting of the M1/Grayston Drive Pedestrian and cyclist structural bridge collapse inquiry that was scheduled for end of the month (March) has been postponed.

The proceedings that were scheduled  from 27 March 2017 to 04 May 2017 have been postponed due to technical challenges affecting the proceedings.

The dates scheduled from the 04th of May 2017 until 09 June 2017, will continue as scheduled.

"The postponement and delay is beyond our control and is regretted", said Samuel.

Proceedings of the Inquiry were brought to a halt on 29 August 2016 by the Presiding Officer, Lennie Samuel when one of the interested parties had on a “short notice” made a request for additional information from an expert witness representing Form-Scaff. The expert witness in question was still on the stand providing testimony. The inquiry felt the request could not be acceded to because the information requested could not be secured immediately as the witness was residing abroad.

Form-Scaff, South Africa’s market leader in the supply of formwork, support work and scaffolding to the construction and civil engineering industries was one of the role players in the construction of a walkway bridge that was built to link Sandton and Alexandra. Other interested parties involved in the project were the City of Johannesburg and the Johannesburg Development Agency who were clients that appointed Royal HaskoningDHV as an agent. Murray & Roberts is the principal contractor and the supplier of material.

The companies together with workers, and unions are lined-up to testify before the inquiry.

The M1/Grayston Drive Pedestrian and cyclist structural bridge collapsed on 14 October 2015. The tragic incident led to the death of two people; and injury to 19 persons.

Expected to testify when the inquiry resumes is a witness on behalf of FormScaff, Gary Farrow, a mechanical engineer from Australia. To date four witnesses representing Murray & Roberts have testified. More testimony is still expected from Murray & Roberts, Form Scaff, Royal HaskoningDHV, consultants and the JDA.

The M1/Grayston Drive Pedestrian and cyclist structural bridge collapse Inquiry is mandated to investigate but, not limited to the following:

·          The responsibility of the client in terms of construction regulations

·          The responsibility of the principal constructor in terms of the construction regulations and as an employer

·          The responsibility of the agent on behalf of the client in terms of the same regulations

·          Supplier of materials

·          Design

The Department of Labour set-up the Section 32 Inquiry to unearth the causes for the collapse of scaffolding work into the Grayston Drive Pedestrian and cyclist structural bridge collapse. The investigation is being held in terms of the Occupational Health and Safety (OHS) Act.

The inquiry was announced by the Department of Labour in October 2015, and it started its evidence gathering work in February 2016. -ENDS.

For more information contact:

Teboho Thejane

Departmental Spokesperson

082 697 0694

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