Removal of the pier, also known as Waterfront Park, was scheduled to start this weekend after it was determined to have deteriorated beyond repair, according to a Friday press release from the Seattle Parks and Recreation department.
The two workers were using saw cutting on the pier as part of the dismantlement when it started collapsing, Marshall Foster, director of the Seattle Office of Waterfront and Civic Projects, said during a press conference Sunday.
Five of the 12 people at the site were on the pier when when an alarm went off indicating a problem, Foster said.
A monitoring system has been in place since removal work started last week, and further deterioration had occurred as work continued on Friday, according to Foster.
Pier 58 sits near several popular Seattle attractions such as Pike Place Market, the Seattle Great Wheel and the aquarium.
The pier was built in 1974, and the marine environment “is just brutal on these structures,” Foster said. “The wave action, the king tides, the salt water, and they deteriorate very quickly in this particular case.”
The pier was also home to the four-ton FitzGerald Fountain. Supports were built for that, fountain but they had disconnected, leaving a heavy unsupported weight on the pier, according to Foster.
The unsupported weight coupled with the destructive marine environment likely contributed to the deterioration, Foster said.