Abu Dhabi’s TDIC confirms worker died at Louvre museum site

Officials said the worker’s death in June was the first fatality that happened on site



A worker has died on the Louvre museum construction site in Abu Dhabi’s Saadiyat island, the developer behind the project has confirmed.

The Tourism Development and Investment Authority confirmed that the worker died in June and said it was the first fatal incident on the Louvre Abu Dhabi construction site.

“Since the unfortunate incident took place, the company’s main focus has been the worker’s family especially during this tough time,” it said in a statement.

French media reported that the worker was a 28-year-old man from Pakistan.

TDIC said there were an average of 5,500 workers on site, with more than 27 million hours logged to date.

“The company is still working with its contractor and the relevant authorities to investigate how this unfortunate incident took place and to make sure that the necessary measures are taken accordingly,” the statement added.

Designed by architect Jean Nouvel, Louvre Abu Dhabi, anticipated to be ready by December 2015, will encompass 9,200 square metres of art galleries including a 6,681 sqm permanent gallery and a 2,364 sqm temporary gallery.

Located in the Saadiyat Cultural District, it is one of the three main museums coming up on the island, with the other two including Zayed National Museum and Guggenheim Abu Dhabi.

In February, New York-based Human Rights Watch alleged that migrant workers building the Louvre and Guggenheim museums at Saadiyat were being mistreated. HRW said workers’ passports were confiscated and that they were not provided wages, benefits and adequate housing.

However TDIC denied all the allegations stating that it had endeavoured to comply with UAE labour law at its building sites on Saadiyat.

“TDIC rejects the report’s unfounded conclusions, which are outdated and based on unknown methodologies, even as TDIC has been transparent in its efforts,” the company said in a statement at the time.