'All safety measures were in place' during demolition site death in Tottenham

Haringey Independent: North London Coroner's Court heard evidence from the site manager during the second day of the inquest North London Coroner's Court heard evidence from the site manager during the second day of the inquest

The site manager in charge when a young man was crushed to death by a falling pillar told an inquest this morning that all correct safety procedures were in place.

Laurence Crossan, 25, suffered fatal head and chest injuries in the accident at the former Canon rubber factory at 811 High Road, Tottenham, on October 29, 2012.

The demolition worker had strayed into a hazardous ‘drop zone’ when part of the building fell on him. He died in hospital less than two days later from his injuries.

An inquest at North London Coroner’s Court is attempting to establish the circumstances leading up to Mr Crossan’s death.

Jim McRedmond, the site manager at the time, told the jury that a daily safety briefing had been given to the three men on site that day, including Mr Crossan’s brother Stephen and site foreman Donald Anderson.

A brick wall obscuring Stephen and Laurence Crossan’s view of Mr Anderson pulling down the building from the other side had also been left up as it was deemed unsafe to pull down.

Mr McRedmond said: “All three had full vision of the building as the outer walls had been knocked down and they were working at ground floor level.

“Donald felt it was unsafe to take down the wall, which I believe was a toilet wall, and wanted to pulverise the section around it. The wall wasn’t left up in error.”

Lawyers representing the family of Mr Crossan had questioned whether a ‘banksman’, or supervisor, should have been on site at the time and whether or not two-way radios should have been in operation.

But Mr McRedmond, who has 31 years in the demolition industry, told the jury: “Any banksman would have been a hindrance. The plant machines have reversing cameras on them as it is and I never have anyone on foot near machinery who is not required for the job.

“You keep people the utmost distance from moving machinery and buildings being demolished. The radios were also deemed not to be required.”

The inquest continues.

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