60kg metal sheets fall 6 storeys, nearly hit woman at Changi building; BCA orders inspection

BCA said it had instructed the building owner to appoint a professional engineer to carry out a detailed investigation of the incident, inspect the condition of the remaining metal cladding panels and recommend rectification measures.
PHOTO: The Straits Times

A woman was nearly hit by heavy metal sheets that dislodged from the roof of a Changi building on Thursday morning (April 4).

In response to queries, the Building and Construction Authority (BCA) said it has ordered the building owner to carry out a detailed investigation.

No injuries were reported and the structural integrity of the building is not affected, BCA added in its Saturday reply.

BCA said that the incident, reported by Chinese-language daily Lianhe Zaobao, occurred at around 10am at 116 Changi Road.

The address belongs to WIS @ Changi, a six-storey commercial building.

The Straits Times has contacted the building's managing agent, Property Facility Services, for more information.

"As an immediate precautionary measure, the affected area directly below the fallen metal cladding panels has been cordoned off," BCA said.

Mr Tay, who works for an engineering firm located in the building, told ST that he and two colleagues were nearby when they heard loud bangs.

They turned around and saw three metal panels on the ground.

"We were in shock. There was a lady, she had barely walked two steps from where the sheets fell when it happened. Had she been slightly slower, I shudder to think what could have happened," said the 40-year-old.

They attempted to move the sheets away from the walkway.

"I estimated each sheet of metal to measure about 1m by 2m, weigh around 60kg, and to be around three to four inches thick," said Mr Tay, who is trained as an engineer. He added that the building got its temporary occupation permit a few years ago in 2015.

Mr Tay said the police and a BCA officer visited the scene after Thursday's incident. He added that just a week ago, on March 28, metal panels also fell from the building's facade.

In its Saturday reply, BCA said it had instructed the building owner to appoint a professional engineer to carry out a detailed investigation of the incident, inspect the condition of the remaining metal cladding panels and recommend rectification measures.

It has also asked the owner to cordon off areas below the building facade with similar features while the inspection is carried out.

This article was first published in The Straits Times. Permission required for reproduction.