Electrolux prioritises staff safety after roof collapse

ELECTROLUX management have assured staff the plant will be safe when workers return next week, despite not knowing what caused the roof of an electrical substation to collapse.

General manager Mark O’Kane said no employee was put at risk when an asbestos-ridden roof collapsed, at 1am on Tuesday.

The cave-in caused a power-outage to most of the factory as well as water damage from the fire sprinklers being set off. 

Mr O’Kane said the electrical substation was an authorised personnel only zone and the one person in the factory with authorisation to enter was on day shift when the roof collapsed. 

“The roof has been removed and there is no evidence that shows what the failure was,” he said.

“We have an external structural engineer working on on it, but there is nothing conclusive.

STORY: ROOF CAVES IN AT ELECTROLUX FACTORY

Mr O’Kane said the first priority was to remove the asbestos and ensure employees would be safe, the second priority was getting the plant up and running, and thirdly the structural engineer would  check the roofs of all other buildings. 

He said the majority of the asbestos had been removed and all would be gone by the time staff were allowed back on the premises, which would not happen until the “relevant authorities” had signed off on the work.

Mr O’Kane said he hoped to have the factory up and running on Saturday morning for a practice run to check for any potential problems ahead of a planned return of back shift staff on Sunday night.

But he would have a clearer idea of how the removal of asbestos and repair of the roof was progressing by this afternoon.

nicole.kuter@fairfaxmedia.com.au

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