Denmark: Repairman dies while working on massive sculpture

Associated Press
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Copenhagen, Denmark – Police in Denmark say a repairman died while working on a steel column that is part of a massive sculpture in the city of Herning.

Jutland region police said the 46-year-old man was performing maintenance work on the sculpture, titled “Elia,” and was nearing the top of the 32-meter-high (105-feet-high) column when the crane operator hoisting him up lost radio contact late Tuesday afternoon.

A rescue team try to assist a repairman who was trapped and died inside one of the steel columns of Ingvar Cronhammar's Elia sculpture, at the Herning Art Museum, in Herning, Denmark, Tuesday, March 23, 2021.

A rescue operation with another crane ended when the repairman was found suspended on the column and declared dead by a doctor at the site.

A rescue team try to assist a repairman who was trapped and who later died inside one of the steel columns of Ingvar Cronhammar's Elia sculpture, at the Herning Art Museum, in Herning, Denmark, Tuesday, March 23, 2021.

Police said it remained unclear whether the man died of a medical condition or an accident related to his work.

“Elia,” created by Swedish-Danish sculptor Ingvar Cronhammar, was inaugurated in 2001. It consists of a spherical central dome with a diameter of 60 meters (200 feet) and four tall columns. A tube in the center of the sculpture is designed randomly blast flames some eight meters (26 feet ) into the air at intervals.

Danish media said it wasn’t the first time a person had died in connection with the artwork, part of the collection of the Herning Museum of Contemporary Art.

In 2016, a 21-year-old man died after falling from the dome, and later the same year a woman died the same way. As a result, a safety net was installed around the sculpture.

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