SINGAPORE: The construction company involved in the collapse of the incomplete highway structure on Friday (Jul 14) is Or Kim Peow (OKP) Contractors, which just earlier this week was convicted and fined for a separate workplace-related death in 2015.

The incident took place adjacent to the slip road from Upper Changi Road East to Pan-Island Expressway (Changi) early Friday morning, which resulted in one worker killed and 10 others injured.

The Land Transport Authority (LTA) said in its statement on Friday that the contractor was carrying out works to cast the decking for the new viaduct adjacent to the slip road from Upper Changi Road East to PIE (Changi). Eleven were working on top of the structure when the accident happened, including the Chinese national who died.

Preliminary investigations indicate that the corbels supporting the pre-cast beams had given way, the agency added.

PREVIOUSLY CONVICTED AND FINED

According to LTA’s tender documents, OKP successfully tendered for the construction of the viaduct from Tampines Expressway (TPE) to the PIE (westbound) and Upper Changi Road East in 2015, which was worth more than S$90 million.

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OKP’s annual report from that year also stated that among its ongoing construction projects is the construction of the abovementioned viaduct. The project started in November 2015 and was expected to end in November 2019, with a contract value of S$94.6 million, the annual report stated.

On Tuesday, the construction firm and one of its supervisors were convicted and fined for failing to take adequate safety measures at a work site under the Yio Chu Kang Flyover on Sep 22, 2015. Four workers fell 6.4m to the ground when part of a platform they were working on gave way, resulting in one death and three others suffering fractures and contusions.

The Ministry of Manpower said investigations found that the company had failed to ensure that the platform the workers were on had been properly put up. 

OKP was fined S$250,000 and MOM said this was “a clear case of a company that does not take workplace safety seriously”.

Founded in 1966, OKP has up to 50 employees and describes itself as “a leading infrastructure and civil engineering group in Singapore”. It specialises in constructing airport runways and taxiways, expressways and flyovers as well as maintenance works for roads.

Public sector clients include the Housing and Development Board, JTC, National Parks Board, PUB and Urban Redevelopment Authority while private sector clients include Changi Airport Group and ExxonMobil. In recent years OKP has also expanded its core business to include property development and investment. 

Courtesy of Channel News Asia