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Sydney Opal Tower: Residents forced to leave for second time
December 27, 2018 - Written by editor
An exterior view of the Opal Tower (C, back) at Sydney Olympic Park in Sydney, Australia, 24 December 2018.Image copyrightEPA
Image captionA crack in the building’s wall caused residents to evacuate on Monday.

Hundreds of people have been told to leave a Sydney tower block for a second time, after a crack appeared in its walls on Monday.

Many residents of the 38-storey Opal Tower had moved back in, after the alarm was first raised when loud noises were heard and a crack was discovered.

The company that built the tower said it remained “structurally sound” and the relocation was just a precaution.

It says this will allow engineers and investigators to work around the clock.

The builder, Icon, said that no residents were in danger, but this would help them repair the site in the quickest time possible without further disruption to residents.

Authorities had previously said 51 of the tower’s 392 units were affected and the newly-completed building in Sydney Olympic Park was declared safe for a majority of residents to return.

Police talk with evacuated residents from the Opal Tower on MondayImage copyrightAFP
Image caption51 units have been declared unsafe to return to for residents but all tower inhabitants have been told to leave

As many as 3,000 people were evacuated on Monday, after an internal support wall failed on the 10th floor of the building, according to police.

Icon confirmed that a pre-cast concrete panel had cracked in the building.

A team of engineers from Icon and the building’s developer Ecove have been assessing the building, which was only completed earlier this year.

On Wednesday, the New South Wales government said it was also investigating the building’s structural integrity and that of neighbouring residential towers.

Local news outlets have published pictures of the building damage, showing loose plaster and crumbling walls.

However, the developer, Ecove, has defended the building’s “high quality”, which it said was above the industry standard.

Icon said residents might have to live outside of their homes for up to 10 days and that all accommodation would be provided by the company

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