A man is dead and his co-worker is fighting for life after after they were submerged in concrete that fell from a crane on a Melbourne construction site.
A third man suffered minor injuries when the tub of concrete fell into a pit at a building site on Whitehorse Road at Box Hill at 12.20pm on Thursday.
One man, who is yet to be formally identified, was fully submerged in the concrete and trapped under a
“fair amount of weight” and died at the scene.
A 28-year-old Caroline Springs man was taken to hospital with critical injuries while a 27-year-old Southbank man suffered minor injuries.
Police and WorkSafe are investigating the circumstances of the incident which has left co-workers traumatised.
“This has been a particularly tragic event,” senior intensive care paramedic Gary Robertson told reporters at the scene.
“We’ve got three men that were hit by this load that came loose. Unfortunately one has lost his life, which has been particularly traumatic.”
Mr Robertson said the critically injured man suffered extensive injuries to his head, chest, pelvis and abdomen.
He was partially submerged by the wet concrete and had to be extricated before crews could begin working on him.
“Thankfully … they were able to at least get him out of that part, which will actually have saved his life, given him a chance,” he said.
“The gentleman who passed away was submerged considerably and had a fair amount of weight on him.
“As you can imagine the crane driver and the workers there are incredibly traumatised.”
Counsellors were sent to the worksite on Thursday afternoon to support colleagues of the three men as well as those who rushed from nearby to help.
It is understood the men were working in a basement or car park area of the development.
CFMEU state secretary John Setka said the incident involved Clarke Cranes, the same company involved in a crane collapse in Richmond in June.
A union spokesman said the company would be issued with a safety notice, bringing 80 of the company’s fleet of cranes currently operational on sites around the city to a halt until they’ve all undergone inspections.
A Clarke Cranes representative declined to comment.
Seven people have died on Victorian construction sites this year.