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Truss probed in Ilford building collapse

The investigation into the catastrophic collapse of a steel-framed building in East London was this week focusing on the main steel truss supporting the roof and top three floors.

Contractor Ashe told NCE that the critical parts of the steel frame had been transported to the Health and Safety Executive’s (HSE) laboratory in Buxton, Derbyshire from the site in Ilford and wouldl begin being examined by forensic experts this week.

Investigators are focusing on the remains of a 29m long, one storey deep steel frame, which spanned over the top of the steel auditorium, Ashe told NCE. The truss collapsed on 31 January bringing down the adjacent steelwork.

Ashe was building a new, £6.1M, 1,000 seat Worship Centre for client City Gates Church in Ilford, that was due to open later this year. The building was designed by structural engineer Heyne Tillett Steel and the steel frame erected by Norfolk based firm DGT Structures.

The contractor has now dismantled the remaining steel structure and has brought the building back down to the original slab. Initial discussions with the client suggest work could restart in six months, although Ashe director Andrew Morris said there could be modifications in the design.

No timescales have been given on the outcome of HSE’s investigation.

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