Construction workers raised their voices that a special construction safety law is needed to prevent a disaster such as the collapse of I-Park in Hwajeong-dong, Gwangju.
The construction union (Chairman Ok-gi Jang) held a resolution meeting in front of the Blue House on the morning of the 20th and said, “Disasters are being repeated due to illegal multi-level subcontracting, shortening of construction period, and poor management and supervision of the original office. do,” he urged.
The special construction safety law enacted is to give the ordering, design, construction, and supervisor responsibilities for safety management commensurate with their authority in consideration of the characteristics of the construction site. The bill to enact the Special Construction Safety Act, which was proposed by Rep. Kim Gyo-heung of the Democratic Party of Korea in September 2020, has not crossed the threshold of the National Assembly for over a year. The government and the ruling party held an emergency party meeting on the 17th and decided to make an effort to enact the Construction Safety Special Act as soon as possible. Chairman Jang Ok-ki emphasized, “In order for construction workers to work without dying, it is urgent to enact a special construction safety law.”
Many construction workers agree. When the union asked 7,573 union members on the 17th and 18th if it was necessary to enact a special construction safety law, 85.3% answered “it is necessary”. Only 2.5% answered “not necessary”. 12.1% of respondents answered “I don’t know”.
To the question of ‘what do you think is the constructional cause of the Hwajeong I-Park disaster in Gwangju?’ (duplicate responses), the most common answer was “reduced strength due to poor concrete placement” (75.1%). Next, “excessive construction of a weightless plate structure (with only floors and columns without beams)” (44.1%) and “use of rebar materials with insufficient quantity or strength” (25.6%) were followed. 80.7% of respondents cited “speed war due to shortened construction period” as the “root cause of the Hwajeong I-Park disaster.” There were also many responses saying “Illegal multi-level subcontracting” (55.6%) and “Lack of cost due to slashing construction costs” (39.2%).
66.9% of respondents cited “illegal multi-level subcontracting” as the ‘reason for workers dying and injured despite the government’s measures to prevent industrial accidents’. “Quick, quick, speed war” (63.3%), “lowest bid system” (54%), and “negligence in safety management and supervision of construction companies” (37%) were also cited as major causes.
On this day, the Gwangju Disaster and Safety Countermeasures Headquarters announced, “We will dismantle the tower crane at the site of the I-Park collapse on the 21st.” In the past, it was difficult to search for the missing person due to concerns about further collapse due to a tower crane connected to the outer wall of the collapsed building. When the tower crane is dismantled, the search for the missing person is expected to speed up.