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October 16, 2019
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Residents of evacuated Sydney Towers left  in tears

A resident of an apartment evacuated over structural concerns claim he was not allowed to re-enter the building to retrieve hi pets and left crying in the street.

He further says he was also threatened with arrest.

Residents of Mascot Towers in Sydney’s inner-south were forced to find somewhere else to sleep last night when their 10-storey building was evacuated after cracking in its beams.

This morning, adjoining businesses were told not to open and huge cracks appeared in the wall of a nearby hairdressing salon.

Masa Tatewaki, who has lived in the complex for 10 years, said initially he and his partner were told their apartment was not affected, so they decided to move their car from the building garage which was soon to be closed.

“We were told we weren’t allowed to go back into our unit … they said, ‘If you go back in you will be arrested’,” he said.

Tatewaki said he became very distressed as their oven was still on and their two dogs were also inside the unit. “I was just crying on the street,” he said.

When Mr Tatewaki and his partner realised another entry to the building was still open they managed to get inside and pack up a few belongings before leaving.

Matthew Harris was one of the first people to move into the building in 2008 and now has nowhere to stay.

“Some people have got friends and family in Sydney they can stay with, I’m not one of those people, unfortunately,” he said.

“I’m very concerned, I have no idea where I’m going to live for the next days, weeks and months.”

He said he was dreading how much the property value might fall and said the “Government has ruined things”.

“The system is broken, it needs proper checks and balances for builders.”

In a letter from building management issued yesterday, residents were told an engineer inspected cracking that had developed in the “transfer slab beams supporting the primary building corner”.

“Following the inspection, the engineer raised concerns over the safety for residents in the building,” the letter read.

In a notice from the apartment block’s strata committee on June 13, residents were warned about the possibility of evacuation and told temporary building props had been installed in the carpark.

“This is in response to an ongoing and persistent cracking and structural deformation observed within the primary support structure and the facade masonry,” the notice read.