The inquest into the death of Crossrail worker Rene Tkacik in March last year has been declared as accidental by the coroner who recorded a narrative verdict yesterday.
Tkacik was killed on 7 March 2014 while undertaking concrete spraying operations for BFK close to the Fisher Street Shaft in Holborn.
Three contributory factors were noted by the jury during their consideration of the verdict and these were the state of mind of Tkacik, cleaning procedures and the definition of the exclusion zone in which the incident occurred.
Crossrail has confirmed that it has worked with its tunnelling contractors to jointly develop guidance on exclusion zones.
Evidence given during the inquest suggested that Slovakian-born Tkacik was experienced in working underground and in using sprayed concrete but that his limited English may have made communication with other members of the construction team difficult. Shared accommodation with other Crossrail workers on different shift patterns may have also affected Tkacik’s ability to rest between shifts.
The coroner said that she was satisfied that matters identified during the course of the evidence have already been or were in the process of being dealt with by Crossrail and its contractors. As a result, the coroner will not issue a Prevention of Future Death Report.
Commenting on the verdict, a spokesman for Crossrail said: “Everyone who works on Crossrail continues to be affected by this terrible incident. Our thoughts and sympathies are with Rene Tkacik’s family, friends and colleagues.
“Safety has always been, and continues to be, the number one value for Crossrail and is critical to the delivery of the project.
“Crossrail has a good safety record and sets the most stringent contractor safety requirements in the industry. There is nothing so important on Crossrail that it cannot be done safely.”
Calls before the start of the inquest to consider safety on Crossrail as a whole but the move was rejected by the coroner.