A steel fixer employed by Laing O’Rourke died on Monday after falling 10.5 m down a lift shaft on a London construction site

Keiron Deeney, 23, of Kingsbury, north-west London, suffered multiple head injuries in the accident at Laing’s £55m Discovery Dock luxury housing development at Canary Wharf in London Docklands. It is the third fatality on a construction site in the past two weeks.

HSE inspectors and police have cordoned off the commercial and residential development for investigation.

George Brumwell, UCATT general secretary, said: “Our thoughts are with this young man’s family.”

Brumwell also called for construction companies to acknowledge that the way forward in preventing the recurrence of such accidents was a partnership approach between workers, their trade unions and employers.

He said: “The employers should shed their macho image and adopt a policy of working together at site level and actively promoting a caring, sharing approach.”

This site death comes just a week after the HSE reported its latest statistics on fatal injuries.

The employers should shed their macho image and promote a caring approach

George Brumwell, UCATT general secretary

It was revealed that 70 construction workers have been killed on sites in the past year. This is the same as the figure for 2002/03, although the rate of deaths per 100,000 has fallen from 3.8 to 3.5.

Deaths in construction accounted for 30% of Britain’s worker fatalities during 2003/04. This is 11% more than agriculture, the sector with the second highest number of deaths.

Laing O’Rourke said it was unable to make a public comment until the full circumstances of the incident were known.

An inquest into the accident was opened and adjourned at Poplar coroners’ court on Wednesday.