Failure to find Didcot bodies a “national scandal” claims Rotherham MP
MP Sarah Champion has declared it a “national scandal” that the bodies of workers who became trapped in the rubble of the collapsed Didcot Power Station have still not been found.
Today (August 23) marks six months to the day since the collapse of a boiler house at the site in which Ken Cresswell, of Clifton, John Shaw, of Kimberworth and their colleague Christopher Huxtable from Swansea were killed.
The fourth man killed, Michael Collings, from Teesside, was recovered at the time of the collapse.
Rotherham MP Ms Champion said she was “so frustrated that the men were yet to be found”.
She added: “It is a national scandal that six months on their grieving families are still unable to bury their loved ones.
“The families of the men killed have been through immense psychological torture; firstly not being informed for hours that it was their loved-ones who were missing, then a three week halt on the recovery and another pause for weeks while it was decided how to bring down the remaining structure.
“The families have had to fight to keep the recovery on track, they should never have been forced into this position.
“They are as much victims of this disaster as their men who died. Once the men are home, there will be serious questions to be answered by all those involved and I won’t rest until I get satisfactory answers.”
Grandfather-of-two Ken (57) and Mr Shaw (61), from Kimberworth, and their colleague Christopher Huxtable (34), from Wales have been trapped under the 20,000 tonnes of rubble since the collapse.
Site owners RWE nPower used remote operated vehicles (ROVs) to plant explosive charges on the building, which brought the building down in July but the men’s bodies have still not been found.
Ms Champion also called for the Health and Safety Executive — who have been overseeing the works — to review its demolition procedures.
She said: “Demolition work can of course be dangerous, but every effort must be made to ensure the safety of workers and to prevent similar incidents in the future. If we don’t learn from this disaster we are failing to honour the men who died.”