A failed beam connector may have caused the collapse of part of a steel frame at a building under construction at Temple University in Philadelphia. One worker was injured.
Ironworkers were working on the fifth floor of the seven-story Science Education and Research Center on July 11, when beams and portions of the corrugated metal deck fell to the floor below, according to Michael Richey, battalion chief at the Philadelphia Fire Dept.
“Initial indications are that a failed connector on the fifth floor of the structure caused a beam to fall,” according to a statement from the New York City office of Turner Construction, project construction manager and agent for Temple University.
Richey said that, according to reports at the scene, “one of the bolts may have sheared.”
The site will be shut down through at least July 15, and traffic in front of the building has been diverted, according to Turner. Investigations with state and federal officials are under way.
USA Architects, Easton, Pa., and ARC/Architectural Resources, Cambridge, Mass., designed the $137-million, 246,700-sq-ft building. The facility will contain research and educational spaces for the Institute for Computational and Molecular Science, Material Science, as well as the departments of computer information science, physics, chemistry and biology, according to USA Architects. According to Temple Univeristy, Brinjac Engineering, Harrisburg, Pa., is the structural engineer, with steel fabricator Banker Steel, Lynchburg, Va., and steel erector Cornell & Co., Westville, N.J. The building is scheduled to open in fall 2014.
Philadelphia Fire responded to the incident at 1:17 p.m. on July 11 and found one worker with lower extremity pain, Richey said. That worker was transported to Temple University Hospital. Five workers also were trapped above the collapse and rescued, he said.
The worker, who was not identified, was alert and responded to rescuers, according to Turner. The company reported that the injured worker was in stable condition within hours of the incident.