Hackney tenant lucky to be alive after window falls from flat above, narrowly missing him

ITV News London Reporter Antoine Allen met the tenants 'traumatised' after their near miss

A resident at a Hackney block of flats had a lucky escape when a window pane fell from his third floor flat, smashing onto the ground below and narrowly missing him as he walked through the door.

Mohammed was on the way home from the shops with his dad, Abdul, when the glass crashed down - seconds after he stepped into the building.

He says he is "very traumatised" by the experience.

"I could have died" - the moment the window fell from the third floor flat - seconds after Mohammed step inside

The moment the window fell out of its frame was caught on camera.

Mohammed, who lives in the flat where the window fell from, said the family had complained "multiple times" to Peabody Housing Association - who own the block - about the damaged window.

Mohammed told ITV News the window in his flat became unsafe and would not close at the end of August. They say they called to report it to Peabody on 31 August. 

He told ITV News he had been shaken by the near-miss.

"On the day that it happened, I was very traumatised. I couldn't sleep, and my mum was crying a lot. They should have taken it seriously," Mohammed said.

"I was traumatised" - Mohammed said he could not sleep after he missed being hit by the window by seconds

The family of - Mohammed, Abdul, mother and brother Ahmed - have lived in the flat since 2004. They say they were told someone would be round to inspect it on 9 September - but no-one turned up.

The appointment was rescheduled for 21 September when a contractor visited to take photos of the window. The family says the contractor told them they would send the photos to Peabody, who would follow up the findings.When they did not hear from Peabody, the family told ITV News they called again, warning the housing association that the window could fall out if it was not fixed immediately.

The family were told the earliest a surveyor could attend the property was on the 12 October. 

But on 3 October, the window fell from its frame and smashed to the floor below. 

Ahmed called Peabody's emergency number and eight hours later a contractor boarded up the window in his bedroom. Ahmed and his wife say they have both suffered with colds and coughs throughout the last couple of months due to the drafts coming from the faulty windows.

The smashed window. Credit: ITV News

Neighbour Mahira says she has also had problems with her windows not shutting properly and is "terrified" the same will happen to her windows. She says she first complained to Peabody in March 2020. Surveyors have been sent round to inspect the problem, but, she says "they just take photos and measurements" and nothing has been done.

Instead, her bedroom window was bolted shut, and now had two summers with no ventilation which exacerbates her asthma. A surveyor came round to see as recently as last week, but the windows have not yet been fixed. 

She says she is scared that what happened next door will happen to her too. 

Peabody said: "This is a serious incident which should not have happened. The footage is very distressing and we are relieved and thankful that no-one was hurt.

"We have launched a full investigation into this with our contractor who was managing the repair on our behalf. Repairs flagged as an emergency are always dealt with on the same day and we need to establish why this particular repair was not considered to be an emergency at any point.  

"Our teams are at the property now to support residents and will inspect all windows as part of the investigation, and we are notifying the relevant authorities about the incident. We will take all necessary steps to make sure this does not happen again. We understand people will be concerned and will want detailed answers from us which we’ll be able to do following a full review of all of the circumstances."