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Investigators appeal for video footage of Bow crane collapse

The crane fell over a building site (credit: LAS)

Police investigating a crane collapse in Bow, in which an 85-year-old woman died, are appealing for people with video footage of the incident to get in touch with them.

June Harvey passed away after the 20-metre tall crane toppled over and crashed through the roof of her home in Compton Close on Wednesday afternoon.

A multi-agency investigation into the tragic incident is underway.

Detective Chief Inspector Mark Wrigley from Specialist Crime, said: “The investigation into how this crane came to collapse is still in its very early stages but I am appealing to the public to assist us in building a picture of how these events unfolded. I am looking for anyone who witnessed the incident, or the moments prior to the crane collapsing to get in contact.

“I am aware that several videos were posted online in the immediate aftermath of this incident – I would appeal to anyone that has footage or images on their mobile phone, or any drivers who may have captured events on dashcam footage, to speak to my team.”

A photo taken shortly after the collapse shows a large cloud of dust surrounding the crane (credit: Bridget Teirney)

Anyone with information is asked to contact the police incident room on 020 8345 3715 or tweet @MetCC.

Several other people were injured during the collapse of the crane. 

A construction worker was taken to hospital, where they are said to be in a critical condition.

Tower Hamlets Mayor John Biggs has said the investigation, which includes the Met, the Health and Safety Executive, and the London Fire Brigade, must be “full and transparent” to avoid another similar event occurring.

“My thoughts are with the friends and family of the resident who died and those injured and with all those who have been affected,” Mr Biggs said yesterday. “I would also like to express our thanks to the emergency services who responded to a challenging scene with typical bravery and determination.

“Tower Hamlets is a place where construction sites and cranes are a common sight. But I know that some of you might be feeling differently about them following the terrible events in Bow.

“I want to reassure you that we have no reason to believe there are other sites at risk. It is nonetheless vital that all developers and construction companies stay alert and keep their procedures up to date at all times. Today, we have written to all the major developers operating in Tower Hamlets to ask them to review their safety practices and inspections, particularly where they are using cranes or heavy lifting equipment.

“The Metropolitan Police announced this morning that it is working with the Health and Safety Executive to investigate what happened yesterday. That investigation must be full and transparent so that we can understand how this happened and make sure nothing like it can ever happen again.”

The crane was being erected when it collapsed. It was being used on a building site between Watts Grove and Gale Street to build a mid-tier block of “modular homes.”

Some of the “modular” homes being erected in Watts Grove, Bow, during an earlier stage of development (credit: Swan Housing)

The homes were constructed by Swan Housing Association at a factory in Essex, before being transported to Bow to be erected.

In a joint statement yesterday, the Chair and Chief Executive of Swan Housing said: “We have never experienced a situation like this before and it is something that no organisation ever wishes to happen. We therefore stand ready to respond fully to support the investigation to understand what has occurred to cause this incident.”

For more on this story, and the latest on our other local and national news, listen to Time 107.5FM

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