There was more bad news for the Brazil 2014 World Cup preparations as it was revealed two workers have been killed by a falling crane on the site of the host stadium for the first game. The lates
12pm: Previous underspends on maintenance work, deferred plans to renew infrastructure, and other factors including engineering works overruns are contributing to delays to rail passenger and freight services, according to new data published today by the Office of Rail Regulation (ORR).
ORR’s latest analysis of rail performance highlights that more than half of delays on the network are caused by problems attributable to Network Rail.
It said the company has made progress in reducing delays associated with civil engineering assets, such as bridges but added that around half of the delays attributed to Network Rail are a result of infrastructure failings. Asset failures are also on an increasing trend – particularly those related to track faults, telecoms failures and cable faults.
Between April and October this year, there were more than nearly 16,000 infrastructure incidents across the network, nearly 5% more than over the same period last year, despite what it said were benign weather conditions.
ORR’s evaluation attributes some of the increase in delays with Network Rail’s deferral of works for parts of the rail network such as tracks, level crossings and electrification. Network Rail has also significantly under-spent allocated funds. The company’s own regulatory accounts for the first four years of the control period show that it under-spent nearly £1.2bn meant for maintenance and renewal of its assets. The regulator said itrecognised that the company faces the challenges of managing traffic growth and timetabling on a congested network, as well as constraints on the access needed to work on the track. However, ORR has urged Network Rail to “make good use of the funds provided to renew the network and address the problems affecting performance”.
From overnight: Two workers were killed yesterday when a crane lifting a section of the roof for one of the key Brazil 2014 World Cup stadiums collapsed.
The Arena Corinthians, also known as the Itaquerão stadium, is due to host the opening match of the tournament starting on 12 June.
A statement from the firm responsible for building the stadium Odebrecht Infraestrutura said that shortly before 1pm local time “the crane lifting the last module of the stadium’s metallic roofing structure toppled, which led the module to fall onto a circulation area of the east building and partially damage the LED façade”. It went on to state: “The stadium structure was not compromised.”
Fifa had previously imposed a deadline of December for completing the stadium in Sao Paulo.
The Odebrecht statement in full: “Odebrecht Infraestrutura and Sport Club Corinthians Paulista regrettably inform that an accident occurred this afternoon on the construction site of Arena Corinthians that led to the death of two workers: Fábio Luiz Pereira, 42, a Munck operator/driver from the company BHM, and Ronaldo Oliveira dos Santos, 44, an assembler from the company Conecta. Shortly before 1 p.m., . This was the 38th time that this procedure had been carried out on the site and a module the same size had been installed just over a week ago in the stadium’s south sector. Teams from the fire department are currently on the location. At this moment, all efforts are being concentrated on offering complete assistance to the families of the victims.
Arena Corinthians is scheduled to host six matches during the World Cup – four in the first competition phase, on 12, 19, 23 and 26 June followed by two in the playoffs on 1 July in the round of 16 and on 9 July in the semifinals.
The BBC has images of the collapse here.
Also from yesterday: Construction has officially been completed on the £5M The Kelpies sculpture in Falkirk, Scotland.
The structures’ completion is a significant stage in the £43M Helix project, which is transforming 350ha of land between Falkirk and Grangemouth and is funded via a partnership between The Big Lottery Fund, Falkirk Council and Scottish Canals.
Standing 30m tall, The Kelpies pay homage to the tradition of the working horses of Scotland which used to pull barges along Scotland’s canals and worked in the fields in the area where they now stand.
They also stand either side of a new canal extension which links the Forth & Clyde Canal to the North Sea and are the result of a unique collaboration between the partners and Glasgow-based artist, Andy Scott, which has been seven years in the making.
More than 6km and 600t of structural steel has been used in the construction process and more than 10,000 special fixings have been used to secure the “skin” of the two horses heads (one looking up and one looking down) to the steel framework.