'Cracking noises' trigger evacuation of Sydney apartment tower

'Cracking noises' trigger evacuation of Sydney apartment tower

'Cracking noises' trigger evacuation of Sydney apartment tower

About 300 people from more than 150 units in the 392-apartment Opal Tower and neighbouring buildings were evacuated amidst fears the brand-new high rise could collapse.

Susan Maguire and her son Joshua were among those evacuated.

"I was walking through the mall and I'm like oh my God, I had my towel around me". They have made their own arrangements for accommodation.

Firefighters and engineers are expected to enter the complex later on Monday to investigate the reported cracks on the 10th floor and their cause - including whether the building is in danger of collapse. It wasn't until about 12:30am on Christmas morning that it was finally declared that the building wasn't going to collapse.

There's now no timeline on when the residents of the 51 unsafe apartments will be allowed to return to their homes.

However it is not yet known how long residents of the affected units will be without their homes.

Fire & Rescue NSW Urban Search and Rescue officers and specialist engineers, as well as the building's designers and managers, worked late into the night to assess the building.

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"An emergency services operation is underway after concerns were raised for the structural integrity of a 30-storey building at Sydney Olympic Park", police said in a statement.

The Fire and Rescue NSW superintendent, Adam Dewberry, said the strata manager would be working with the insurer and builders to fix the issue, but he wasn't sure what work would be happening on Tuesday.

But there has been no further movement detected on laser monitors deployed by emergency services.

"In relation to pets, when we find them, they will be moved through the RSPCA to whoever we can locate tonight", Det Supt Rogerson said.

Aerial footage by Seven Network showed fire crews setting up tents while police redirect traffic and pedestrians. It cost $165 million to build.

The building was built by Ecove as part of a mixed-use development.

An exclusion zone with a radius of 1 kilometer (half a mile) was established around the building, forcing the evacuation of neighboring buildings and the closure of roads and a train station.

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