Cologne archive sparks disciplinary hearing

Cologne archive sparks disciplinary hearing
Photo: DPA
Cologne mayor Fritz Schramma has started disciplinary proceedings against the head of the city building department in hopes of clarifying how the city’s archive collapsed earlier this month, killing two and endangering thousands of historic documents.

In the first official consequences for the devastating accident, building department head Bernd Streitberger is accused of withholding important information that could have prevented the accident that laid waste to half a city block in Cologne’s historic centre.

Over the weekend, media reports revealed that construction managers and city officials saw measurements that clearly showed the archive was sinking into the excavation work below it weeks before the building collapsed during underground metro construction. The revelations prompted Schramma to begin an investigation into city officials admidst calls for some to step down.

Meanwhile the Cologne transportation department (KVB) is planning a special meeting on March 31 to root out any irresponsible action among their officials in the March 3 incident.