World News – UA – Victoria celebrates 50th anniversary of West Gate Bridge collapse


An impromptu memorial has been erected in the Victorian Parliament to mark the 50th anniversary of the West Gate Bridge disaster, the state’s worst industrial accident

Flowers and cards were left at Queen’s Hall in remembrance of the 35 deceased workers and their 18 injured colleagues

At 11.50 a.m., a 112-meter span of the bridge gave way during construction and fell into the Yarra River

The Australian and Victorian flags at the top of the bridge are lowered at half mast from 7 a.m. to 7 p.m. every October 15

The accident had a major impact on the construction industry, with many safety initiatives introduced in the aftermath of the disaster

Independent MP Andy Meddick said the memorial was installed at Queen’s Hall for the labor movement

« It is extremely important that we remember the worst industrial disaster this state … has ever known, » said Mr. Meddick

« How this country and state subsequently treated workers’ rights has been instrumental

« So much progress made by the trade union movement in the field of workers’ rights in all workplaces comes from this moment

Prominent union official John Setka said his father was one of the survivors to walk the span as it collapsed to the ground

« We have come a long way in enhancing safety on construction sites, but the enormity of this tragedy will never be forgotten, » said Mr. Setka

Workplace Safety Minister Ingrit Stitt said the anniversary was a tragic reminder of how dangerous workplaces are

« (This is) why it is so essential that we constantly renew our commitment to safety in all workplaces in the Victorian state, » said Ms Stitt

A commemoration at West Gate Memorial Park in the suburb of Spotswood, near the crash site, is on hold due to Melbourne’s lockdown rules

The park was opened in 2004 to honor the victims of the accident and raise awareness of workplace safety

West Gate Bridge Collapse

World News – UA – Victoria Celebrates 50th Anniversary of West Gate Bridge Collapse


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