TWO MEN believed to be carrying a sofa died when part of a balcony collapsed in London today.
At least six others were injured following the incident in Cadogan Square in Knightsbridge shortly before 10am. All eight are believed to be removal men.
Greg Hands, Conservative MP for Chelsea and Fulham, tweeted: “Balcony collapse in Cadogan Sq. Just spoke with Cadogan Ests (Cadogan Estates, property company), not their property, but believe balcony broke when the removal men were moving a sofa out and the combined weight might have broken it.
“Casualties were removal staff. My thoughts are with their families.”
London Ambulance Service (LAS) initially said one man had died and another was taken to hospital.
The Metropolitan Police later said a second man had died in hospital.
The area is full of residential property, with many of the buildings divided into flats. The first-floor balcony is believed to have been connected to property number 37, a five-storey terraced building, before crashing 10 metres (33ft) to the ground.
The iron railing appears to have fallen away, though the brick base does not appear to be damaged.
A number of long ropes are hanging from the balcony to the ground where plastic sheets are gathered.
A police tent has been erected on the pavement and the street - where the average property is worth £3.2 million, has been closed to the public.
Raj Ramanoop, who lives in the square, said he had been alerted by a friend in a nearby embassy who initially told him scaffolding had come down.
Mr Ramanoop said: “By the time I got back here the police had cordoned off the whole street.
“I heard it was a sofa or furniture, we don’t know whether it was coming in or going out because you don’t look at these things.”
A police spokesman said: “Two people are confirmed to have died, one at the scene and one in hospital.
“We were called to the scene following reports of a balcony collapse.”
According to the LAS, emergency services were called to Cadogan Square at 9.58am.
The spokesman said: “We sent three ambulance crews, an advanced paramedic, the hazardous response team and a London air ambulance.
“We treated eight people. Every effort was made to resuscitate a patient.
“Sadly a man died at the scene.
“Six patients were treated for minor injuries but did not go to hospital.”
The spokesman said a seventh person was taken to St Mary’s Hospital to be treated for his injuries.
A local woman saw two men lying dead or injured in the road on her way back from the hairdresser, her son said.
Vera Skeete said his mother Theresa Roberts was left in shock by what she saw at around 10.30am. Mr Skeete said: “Mum was walking past and she saw them laying on the floor. They were not even covered up. It gave her a heart attack.”