Coronial inquest into Canberra construction worker’s death in 2012

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The coronial inquest into the death of a Canberra construction worker five years ago commenced this week.

According to ABC, workers at the Kingston foreshore heard a loud crack before a concrete pouring boom fell and killed a young worker in July 2012. Two other workers suffered minor injuries in the incident.

Detective Senior Constable Simon Roscoe told the court the workers were preparing to pour concrete for a column on the ground floor when they heard the noise.

“All the men knew there was something badly wrong,” he said.

The victim, Ben Catanzariti had only been on the job for four weeks.

Detective Senior Constable Roscoe said he saw that the bolts on the concrete boom had given way, causing it to fall.

The ACT’s Director of Public Prosecutions (DPP) started a case against a maintenance company and one of its engineers, but the case failed after expert reports contradicted over why the bolts gave way.

“It was facing a difference of opinion that would have been fatal to the case,” said coroner Ken Archer.

“The reality is that over the five years since Ben’s death, a number of very qualified experts have expressed different views about why the bolts failed.”

Originally set to be done in three days, the hearing was abandoned on Tuesday to give parties ample time to prepare. The hearing is expected to return in September.

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