Exact building collapse cause still unknown

11/2/11'Building progress at Birchenell, Berkhamsted
11/2/11'Building progress at Birchenell, Berkhamsted
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THE exact cause of a shop collapse is still unknown after more than two weeks.

Only a thin layer of rubble remains at the site of former mens outfitters Birtchnells near the junction with Kings Road in High Street, Berkhamsted.

But while the Health and Safety Executive is currently investigating, the exact cause remains a mystery.

The collapse in the early morning of Sunday January 30 is still being blamed on a structural fault.

Initially the road was closed before temporary lights were installed to allow the use of one lane in High Street.

Herts Highways spokesman Jo Brown said: “We understand that there were some delays to the demolition work but the road was fully reopened and the permanent signals restored on Friday afternoon.”

Responding to complaints that signs have incorrectly stated that High Street has been consistently closed, she added: “There were occasions in the last couple of weeks when the road had to be closed completely with little advance warning for the safety of road users and the various crews working there, which was why ‘road closed’ signs remained in place throughout.

“We have reminded the company that was responsible for demolishing the building and the water company that was working in the area that, now that the works are complete, they should have removed any signs they put up about road closures.”