Cranes halted after horror workplace accident

UP to 80 cranes have been ordered to stop operating in Melbourne after a man was killed and another critically injured in a horror workplace accident in the city’s east.

It happened at a construction site on Whitehorse Road in Box Hill about 12.20pm on Thursday.

It’s understood a crane was moving a tub of wet concrete when the chains snapped and the load fell into a pit, submerging three workers.


Tragically, one of the men could not be saved and died at the scene while the remaining two, aged 28 and 27, had to be winched out of the concrete using heavy-rescue equipment.

The older man was taken to the Royal Melbourne Hospital in a critical condition with injuries to his head and chest, while the younger man sustained only minor physical injuries.

He was taken to Box Hill Hospital in a stable condition.

Gary Robertson from Ambulance Victoria said the incident was “traumatic” and “something you never want to see”.

It’s the second workplace accident involving a crane operated by Clarks Cranes in less than two months.

Back in late July, one of the company’s cranes succumbed to harsh winds and collapsed on a site in Richmond.

The Construction, Forestry, Maritime, Mining and Energy Union (CFMEU) has issued 80 safety notices to the company, halting the operation of all of its cranes until they have been inspected.

WorkSafe Victoria is investigating.