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File photo of construction work in Singapore (Photo - Terry Xu)

Fatal accident at Tuas worksite during lifting operation, 46th death this year

A construction worker died in hospital after he got hit by a snapped lifting chain on Monday (8 August).

The incident took place at a construction work site in Tuas when a team of workers was lifting a formwork for the walls of a stairwell.

One of the lifting chains suddenly snapped, causing the remains of the chain section swing upwards and hit the deceased, who was standing nearby.

The Ministry of Manpower gave a media statement of the incident on Monday and said that the developer for the construction project is JTC Corporation, and the main contractor is Tiong Seng Contractors.

In the media statement, MOM said: "Employers and contractors are reminded to have a lifting plan for use during crane-lifting operations. The lifting plan shall include the selection of appropriate lifting equipment, lifting gear and appliances, and the application of correct lifting methods.

The cause of the accident is being investigated, and Tiong Seng has been ordered to stop all lifting operations at the work site.

"Checks shall also be conducted on lifting equipment and lifting gear to ensure that they are in good working condition and free from defects," stated MOM.

According to MOM’s Singapore Yearbook Of Manpower Statistics 2016, there have been 12,351 incidents in construction sites in 2015, of which 66 was fatal.

Straits Times has noted that this incident is the 46th death at work sites this year.

Deaths from worksites continue despite the announcement by the Manpower Ministry (MOM) on 12 May, that there would be stiffer penalties for workplace safety lacks and lapses. Companies found to have safety breaches will have to stop work for at least three weeks instead of two. They also risk not being able to hire new foreign workers until they fix the problem.