Injured tell their story of brush with death

DUBAI — The first influx of 12 workers injured in the accident were admitted to Rashid Hospital yesterday, while the remaining, suffering mostly from minor injuries, were admitted to Baraha Hospital.

By Hani M. Bathish

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Published: Tue 28 Sep 2004, 9:25 AM

Last updated: Thu 2 Apr 2015, 2:47 PM

Dr Ahmad Al Hashimi, Director of Dubai Medical District and Baraha Hospital, said that some of the injured were admitted to Baraha Hospital, mostly non-critical cases involving minor fractures and bruises.

He added that the entire medical staff at the hospital were placed on high alert in anticipation of any new cases that may be referred to them.

Emma Kalai, 35, an injured worker hailing from Chennai, had suffered a broken leg and was discharged from the emergency room at Rashid Hospital a little after 2pm yesterday after his leg was set in a cast.

Kalai, still in his work overalls, told Khaleej Times that he was working on the wall, fastening iron rods to the reinforcement cage of the wall under construction when all of a sudden the whole structure collapsed and he found himself pinned under the metal structure for about 20 to 25 minutes before he was rescued.

Sentil Kumar, another construction worker discharged from hospital along with his compatriot Kalai, said he was working on the scaffolding around the wall when it collapsed.

He suffered lacerations to his leg and knee, which had to be stitched up.

Kumar said that at least 300 workers were working on the site at the time of the accident and he feared that his friend might be among those trapped under the rubble.

He said that the wall was a latticework of iron bars, each bar at least 32mm thick. Both men are from the South Indian city of Chennai and worked for Al Naboodah Laing.

The Dubai Civil Defence said that they received an emergency call informing them of the accident at 11.15am and that units from three fire stations were dispatched immediately to the site to assist in the rescue effort along with the Dubai Police Rescue Department.

Civil defence declined, however, to comment further on the extent of the damage at the site or the number of injured, pointing out that the Dubai Department of Civil Aviation was the only authority that can comment to the Press.

Among the first civil defence units to arrive at the scene were rescue teams from Qusais and Karama fire stations.

Calendar of accidents

1.9. 2004: SHARJAH: A Laborer died after he fell from an under construction building in Sharjah.

1.8. 2004: DUBAI: One worker was killed instantly and another was seriously injured when a wall collapsed on the other side of the road.

9.8. 2004: SHARJAH: A worker died at a construction site in Al Nahda area.

13.7. 2004: SHARJAH: An Asian laborer died after a serious blow of the head while he was at work in the Industrial Area No.3 Sharjah.

10.8. 2004: DUBAI: Cradle fell from the third floor of a three-storey building a few minutes after two young window cleaners, left the building site. No one was injured in the accident.

13.2. 2004: SHARJAH: The collapse of a building under construction in Al Dhaid killed six men and injured many. Rescuers fought a battle against time to free several Asian workers trapped under a mound of reinforced cement and steel bars at the construction site. The dead included one Pakistani and five Indian workers. They died on the spot.

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