Ad tower was deemed safe, City says

2012-11-07 22:07
Bevan Lakay, News24
Cape Town - The City of Cape Town said on Wednesday that a branding tower that collapsed outside the Cape Town Stadium ahead of the Linkin Park concert had been certified as safe.

Outside the stadium, the tower was blown over by a strong gust of wind just before 19:00, falling on people below, injuring 20.

The City said that the tower had been "pre-approved and certified safe, by structural engineers prior to the event".

But according to a spokesperson at the Cape Town International Airport weather office, near-gale wind speeds topping 50km/h were registered in the City Bowl.

The City said that emergency personnel - including doctors, paramedics and disaster risk management - responded to the incident immediately, and he injured were treated on scene and taken to nearby hospitals for further medical attention.

Two people had sustained serious injuries, ER24 paramedics said in a statement.

Reports said the majority of the injured were women doing promotional work.

The site where the incident occurred was declared safe not long after the remainder of the structure was dismantled, according to the City.

The concert went ahead as scheduled, however, and no announcements of the incident were made inside the stadium.




  • juanne.coetzee - 2012-11-07 22:17

    better news

      preshen.govender.12382 - 2012-11-08 14:21

      safe my a$$

  • michael.bushes.9 - 2012-11-07 22:22

    I demand answers as things like this normally happens in South Africa and not in the future Republic of the Cape, as people here are far to competent. Do an investigation, set a trial date and then sentence to punishment.

      stanton.clarke - 2012-11-07 23:07

      With you on this Michael, we do things right in the Republic of the Cape.

      tom.lang.7923 - 2012-11-07 23:07

      That is the most ridiculous thing I have ever heard. "do an investigation", for what? What happened here is clearly a mistake caused by uncontrollable events (wind), there is nothing to investigate. Simply, a very unfortunate event, that no one would wish to happen.

      JohhnyBGood - 2012-11-07 23:40

      @michael: Did you even bother to read the article ? @CRAP24: What the heck does "But according to a spokesperson ..." mean? It should read: "According to a ..." No if's, but's, nuffing...

      Debbie - 2012-11-07 23:42

      Accidents happen! and although most people may be competent in the Republic of the Cape (where does that come from)? you will always find a percentage who will take short cuts!! Yes I agree, an investigation to find the root cause and then take it from there! xox

      JohhnyBGood - 2012-11-07 23:44

      and err, BTW (it means, By-The-Way, for my 'not so fast' peoples)

      rudi.groenewald - 2012-11-07 23:54

      tom & johnny are probably not from the republic of cape cause they clearly don't get it....

      john.sourcer - 2012-11-07 23:56

      Bushie, I don't think you quite understand succession but you should take cognizance of the following: 1) The Western Cape Brings in a mere 14% of this countries GDP (mostly tourism and farming) 2) Succession would require agreement by the entire country through ballot. This will not happen, we the people of South Africa will not allow it. 3) Things are not as rosy in the WC as you may think. You have the highest murder rate in the country and serious gangsterism and labour issues.

      JohhnyBGood - 2012-11-07 23:58

      @Rudi, weereens, vir die stadige mense:"Outside the stadium, the tower was blown over by a strong gust of wind" Ek het lank genoeg daar gebly om te weet. Anyhoo, ek het werk om te klaar te maak, dan bietjie slaap, dan kinders reg-kry, skool toe vat, kursus vir my, ens, ens. Ginne-gaap, is laag op my lys.

      sharkboy90 - 2012-11-08 00:27

      Los hulle ma man Johnny, ganog lank vat vo dit gan insink j ken mos hulle soort...

      adrian.blau.5 - 2012-11-08 06:12

      As far as I am aware,the structure design should be able to withstand minimum 140 km/h wind loading. Well, that is the criteria that we use.

      rudi.groenewald - 2012-11-08 06:20

      Sigh...people are so edgy, no one can make a joke anymore...

      Mewik - 2012-11-08 06:55

      Well an investigation will be conducted. Either the engineer will be guilty of signing off a unsafe structure, if so they will be liable for damages and will have their certification as an engineer removed. This structure would need to have been authorised by the city, the submission woild include the engineers certificate, if it wasnt submitted and approved then the organisers and promo compnay will be held accountable for erecting an illegal structure and the reaults of doing so. So if all of the above is im order then the only people left to blame are those that erected the structure and failed to follow the certified plans. This will happen so dont think it wont and demand action, the city does take these things pretty damn seriously so dont stress those accountable will be punished.

      roarscurrin - 2012-11-08 07:28

      How did this talk turn from an accident that happened to politics and everything else! People focus on the topic and stop bickering and start making a change if you really that unhappy!

      wilhelm.grobbelaar - 2012-11-08 07:56

      So if it was a volcano that broke out underneath the surface of cape town. What then. Who goes to stand trial then?

      Brownbear - 2012-11-08 10:37

      really Michael! what are you smoking ??? you can keep your wonderful Cape Town and see how it wil survive with out the power house of JHB. lets see if you can eat & drink tourism ......pull your head out of your bottom.

  • blip.noodlum - 2012-11-07 23:19

    So much for the value-judgements of the so-called professional "structural engineers" who certified this as being up to standard...

      richard.hipkin - 2012-11-08 08:31

      Calm down, these things happen. In the US 2 years ago an entire stage collapsed due to sudden high wind storm killing 30 people... That too was an accident.

  • Debbie - 2012-11-07 23:38

    This is shocking and just shows how dangerous these shows can be....thank goodness people didn't die. I hope and pray that those that were injured will recover quickly and easily. We put our lives in the hands of engineers and project teams...they must remember this! and make sure their man-made structures can withstand the predicted weather patterns - and very windy weather was predicted!!

      taariq.janodien - 2012-11-08 01:14

      1 girl has died as a result of her injuries. Confirmed on LP facebook page.

  • sean.crookson - 2012-11-07 23:54

    This is a preventable accident. The reason we need an enquiry is to ensure it never happens again.

  • timkeller - 2012-11-08 00:04

    I was an eye-witness to the structure's collapse and one of the first at the scene as fellow bystanders rushed to lift the heavy scaffold to free to victims. Here are some facts: 1. The Lucozade scaffolding was most definitely NOT safe. I walked past it 5-8 minutes earlier and observe that it was not tied down to the ground at all. 2. The wind was extremely strong. People were struggling to walk across the grounds within the stadium precinct. I guess the gusts were around 60-65 km/h with some sustained periods of 50km/h. 2. Cell reception around Cape Town Stadium during an event is exceptionally poor, and it was impossible to get cell phone calls to 10111, 082 911 or the such. It was also impossible to contact friends to confirm their safety. 3. Medical Response took a while to arrive. The stadium has good medical teams, but attention must be given to the precinct around the stadium. Police started arriving within 2 minutes - but I counted 5-7 minutes before the stadium Emergency Medical crews arrived. 5. Fortunately there were a handful of bystanders with advanced first aid training in the vicinity. 6. The promotions company employees handled the victims quite poorly. I saw them pull one lady with a head injury onto the stage. The DJ kept calling for people who knew CPR - but none of the injured needed resuscitation. 7. Lucozade removed their logos as soon as the scene was cleared. 7. Big Concerts ignored the event and made no announcement inside the stadium.

      cvdwesthuizen - 2012-11-08 00:44

      How can you think that any temporary scaffold can be scrutinized under the regular safety standard when 60km/h gusts blow. Does common sense not force us to look at the unforeseen circumstances and adjust our paths thus forth?

      ilhaam.schaff - 2012-11-08 05:53

      Hi Tim. Did u alert anyone to the fact that the stand was not tied to the ground?

      graeme.stockwell - 2012-11-08 06:42

      This person should have wrote the article for NEWS24 they got the facts!

      pieter.samie - 2012-11-08 06:49

      Dear Tim, as is always the case it is very easy to criticize and make recommendations after the situation have passed. One of my friends (currently in ICU, but ok and will be released shortly) praised the responsiveness of the medical staff and public. \r\n\r\nThere is a reason why this is called an accident. These incidents do occur regardless of all measures we as humans put in place (im not saying the responsible persons have, but lets deal with the current), this is still an accident. \r\n\r\nOne question: seems you were recording this event (stopwatch included) - did you assist the injured? If you deemed the structure unsafe beforehand, did you report it? See how easy it is to criticize after the incident?

      kooveng - 2012-11-08 08:32

      @pieter - The only fault I could see, was the promotional material used (the Lucozade banner) was not Wind proof. Thus acting as a sail when attached to the scaffolding..and with the wind in excess of was only a matter of time before it toppled.

      richard.hipkin - 2012-11-08 08:35

      Spot on Pieter, suddenly everyone is a structural engineer who "saw for themselves" the structure was "unsafe" but did nothing about it. 5 - 7 minutes for emergency to respond and arrive is damn quick. To stand there and count 7 minutes?? Really??? What kind of freak does that? I would be in there sweating to save people, not standing there watching my watch..

  • TheVern69 - 2012-11-08 01:06

    Hope this doesn't happen in joburg saturday,know people going there I care about!

  • lala.kunene - 2012-11-08 02:05

    Tower was pre approved by a fly by night structural engineers

      richard.hipkin - 2012-11-08 08:36

      Really, do you know them?

  • Craig Saunders - 2012-11-08 04:25

    if it ws in Limpopo,ppl wud hv died

  • Lisel Van Wyk - 2012-11-08 06:05

    the wind has blown full containers over in CPT port before people! The engineer can only verify so much, but mother nature something else! Man will always lose against nature

      heather.purnell.39 - 2012-11-08 07:33

      Yip, a hyster and the container it was carrying were blown over in the port yesterday. Wind was pretty scary. Very sad.

  • myfriendshane - 2012-11-08 06:23

    So does this mean that a safety certificate from a structural engineer, will no longer be accepted as a guarantee of safety.

  • mawandewonderman.mkuba - 2012-11-08 06:41

    The city must be charged for incompetency. Patricia you should be embarrassed this thing never happened when the world no 1 mayor Zille was incharge.

      richard.hipkin - 2012-11-08 08:37

      You get dumb, retarded and then you get this a$$hole..

      samantha.smyth.39 - 2012-11-08 14:19

      You are actually an idiot...Look at your Nation Retard!!! You cant even provide for your own people!!! Cape Town is one of the most well kept and seen cities in the world, i wonder who has kept it to that standard....

  • rupert.beukes.1 - 2012-11-08 06:47

    The fact that is fell over is 100% proof that it was NOT safe a 1000 certificates can not make it safe

      richard.hipkin - 2012-11-08 08:38

      So should the port stop using hysters cause one blew over yesterday... stop and listen to yourselves...these things happen.

  • danny.levin.351 - 2012-11-08 06:48

    Sure it was deemed safe... by a BEE/AA apointed "inspector" who passed his exams with 30% marks....

      richard.hipkin - 2012-11-08 08:42

      Gee people are certainly anal this morning...

      Thabang Moyedi - 2012-11-08 08:52

      what does BEE and AA have to do anything you pig. someone has died. By the way city of cape town's disaster management team is predominantly white and coloured (DA). show a little respect and compassion to the injured and deceased.

  • TeganHeneke - 2012-11-08 07:04

    A girl died and big business couldn't care less. I hope her family and those injured take them to the cleaners. Why haven't we heard from Lucozade yet? Where's their caring response?

  • gary.doyle.520 - 2012-11-08 07:05

    One person has died now, very tragic. That structure should have been secured from all sides with cables. I read a comment saying that it was unforeseen, correct me but since when is strong winds in the cape unforeseen.

  • werners13 - 2012-11-08 07:17

    winds were stronger than 50 km/h.. it is INSANE!

  • gershwin.bazier - 2012-11-08 07:24

    scaffold was probably safe but was not safe for a add to hgo onto it, thus causing it to collapse

  • mandy.robinson.5074 - 2012-11-08 07:41

    Please print the names of the structural engineers who "deemed the structure" safe, knowing very well the windy conditions in Cape Town. I would like to avoid any other structures they "deemed safe"

      gawie.gorrel - 2012-11-08 09:08

      The procedure is as follows: Establish if the Engineer was a Competent Qualified Professional Engineer. Then make sure there was a Certificate and what was certified. Then it will have to be established if the structure was correctly constructed and if the materials used were according to specification etc. Then were the completed structure was inspected and by who?. Was this person competent? As for an Act of God, it can only be if the elements such as wind, rain etc was out of the ordinary for the area and time and could not possible have been foreseen by the competent person. A 50km wind is below the normal design speeds for structures in the area.

  • charlene.patel.7 - 2012-11-08 08:25

    very sad.

  • stephen.j.dickson.3 - 2012-11-08 08:57

    Sounds like a case of typical South African ineptitude and poor quality of workmanship to me.........bottom line. My condolences to the bereaved family.

  • mikel.kiparski - 2012-11-08 09:29

    anyone that has ever done any sailing knows what the wind can do,even on a bare mast.never mind a bit of canvas.

  • johnny.sideratos.5 - 2012-11-08 09:32

    scaffolding was not anchored with water ballasts ! this is a safety requirement especially when on cement or tar where structure cannot be tied down as you cannot peg into cement . 4 tons of water should have been in ballasts at the base of each tower . structure was not safe this i noticed first thing on etv this morning when i had seen the accident i could not find any water ballasts ? how city of cape town engineer could pass this without that ? especially on a day with gale force winds

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