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Floor collapse in busy central Sydney

Published: 25th May 2010

Just after 4.00pm today firefighters were called to numerous reports of an explosion and fire in a building under demolition in Pitt Street in the centre of Sydney's business district. Firefighters and other emergency workers rushed to the site to discover that a large 2nd floor concrete flooring slab measuring 1500 square metres and a wall had collapsed whilst being demolished. The collapse caused a shock wave which resulted in the further collapse of scaffolding and hoardings onto the busy Pitt Street footpath. Fortunately only three pedestrians suffered some minor injuries and were transported to hospital for further treatment. The initial reports of smoke were discovered by fire crews to only be dust generated by the large collapse. Fire crews immediately commenced search procedures utilising thermal imaging cameras to determine if any one else was trapped beneath the rubble. They ensured that all utilities such as gas, water and electricity were isolated from the site. The Fire Brigades aerial hydraulic platform was utilised to allow emergency workers to conduct an overhead search for further victims. Pitt Street was closed to all traffic overnight to allow clean up operations. The cause of the collapse will be the subject of further investigation by City of Sydney engineers.