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  Issue No 61 Official Organ of LaborNet 07 July 2000  

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News

Volleyball Stadium Accident - Questions Remain

By HT Lee

The Olympic beach volleyball stadium at Bondi Beach suffered another blow to its image last Friday when the steel platform were ripped off by the 35kmh winds.

It was more good luck than good management that no one was injured or killed.

5,000 of the platforms were installed at the time of the accident--at least 4,000 of them were blown away.

The two seated 40 kilo-platform were build as a complete inter-locking unit. They were supposed to be installed together--the seats had the bolts to hold down the platform.

However, at the time of the installation the seats with the bolts 'were still on the way from Europe.'

Commonsense would have told any one not bolting down a platform in such an open space structure next to the beach is asking for an accident to happen.

Why then did the principal builder NUSSLI, a Swiss company instructed its principal sub-contractor to go ahead and installed the platforms?

Christian Kunzli, project manager of NUSSLI when contacted said they were not allowed to speak to the media. All maters had to be refereed to APP the project management consultant appointed by the Olympic Coordination Authority (OCA). But when APP was contacted the project manager Mick Boyd-Turner said the same thing--they were not allowed to speak to the media and all matters had to be refereed to Bob Dowden from the OCA.

Bob Bowden when contacted about whether there was an engineer's report allowing the platform to be installed without the seats said OCA don't provide day to day details conderning the running of the project to the media.

When I put it to him the information sorted was not about the day to day running of the project but about an accident--Bowden's reply was 'it was not an accident' because no one was hurt--'it was an incident.'

When asked why the inter-locking platforms were imported from overseas rather than made in Australia Bowden said there were thousands of materials used for the Olympic projects and some are imported from overseas.

There are many unanswered questions not forth coming from OCA:

Why was an overseas company given the contract as principal builder?

Why were the platforms and seats imported from overseas?

Who issued the engineer's report giving the go-ahead to installed the platform without the seats and bolts?

Which subcontractor was installing the platform?

Were there proper safety procedures used for the installation of the platforms?

Were there Labor-hire workers being used to install the platform?

Was there pressure from OCA to rush through the project?

Bob Bowden was not very cooperative and that is quite understandable--it seems the attitude of OCA is that they are 'Gods' and we mere mortals and lesser beings should not be disturbing them with trivial questions about platforms 'blowing in the wind.'


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*   Issue 61 contents

In this issue
Features
*  Technology: Union Rep for Global Net Body
The godfather of unions and the Internet, Eric Lee, is seeking your support to give labour a voice on the net's governing body, ICANN.
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*  Interview: Downloaded and Done Over
In the wake of the TV Networks' digital TV victory, Internet industry chief Peter Coroneus rues a missed opportunity for Australia.
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*  Legal: The Global Millennium Project
The International Centre for Trade Union Rights (ICTUR) has developed a draft proposal for a comprehensive revision and modernisation of international labour standards for the new millenium.
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*  Unions: Sandgropers Get Serious on Stress
The Australian Services Union in Western Australia in conjunction with the University of Western Australia, is surveying workers across the state's call centre industry.
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*  Politics: New Work for a New Millennium
View in full the ALP's Draft Industrial Relations Policy to be taken to the National Conference at the end of the month.
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*  Solidarity: Korean Hotel Workers Seek Global Help
Striking Korean hotel workers at the Swiss Grand Hotel and the Seoul Hilton are worried they could be the next targets of escalating riot police violence.
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*  History: Vince's Parable of the Sundial
How a working man survived WWII and ASIO blacklists to save a sundial.
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*  International: Room for Optimism from African Poll
The performance of pro-Deomcracy groups in the Zimbabwean elections has given supporters hope for better days.
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*  Environment: Mexican Wave Goes Green
American politics has taken on a Green hue with the left leaning National Action Party and the Greens in Mexico picking up nearly 40% of the vote in the recent elections.
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*  Satire: Aussies Celebrate Centenary by Leaving Country
Prime Minister John Howard has defended his government's decision not to involve Australia in the centenary federation celebrations.
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*  Review: A Building Sings of Lives Lived in Music
Mysterious shadows flicker in the windows of the Parramatta Town Hall. Strains of trumpet and sarod float outside. It's all part of the urban Theatre Project's latest work, 'The Palais'.
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News
»  No Guarantees for Email Workers
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»  Hotel Bosses Face Olympic Showdown
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»  Aussie Bosses Embarrassed in NZ
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»  Labour Hire Task Force Begins Work
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»  Costa to Stay at Labor Council
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»  Lockout Sleight of Hand
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»  Owner Drivers Unite to Save Industry from GST
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»  The Future Starts Now for Youth Charter
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»  Volleyball Stadium Accident - Questions Remain
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»  Telstra - Making it Queasier for You
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»  MUA Helps Deliver Rice for Timor
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»  Reith Puts Boot into Health and Safety
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»  Biko Backer Tours Australia
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»  Unchain Your Mind at Melbourne Forum
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»  Union Stalwart Honoured
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Columns
»  The Soapbox
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»  Sport
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»  Trades Hall
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»  Tool Shed
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Letters to the editor
»  Congratulations on the Email Rally in Orange
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»  Dissident Site
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»  Tax Workers Defended
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»  A Reluctant Brown-Tongue
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