Chicago, IL Construction Collapse, Nov 1993
CHICAGO ACCIDENT KILLS ONE, INJURES SIX.
Chicago - (AP) - Two floors being built in the city's new main post office collapsed in a tangle of metal girders Wednesday, killing one worker and injuring six others.
Two died in this accident, they were:
PATRICK NEWSOME, 25, of Thornton.
LARRY THORMEYER, 47, of South Holland.
James Cooper, who was working on the building near the section that collapsed, said, "It was just a normal day. I heard a crack, and it seemed the world was coming down."
Fire Commissioner Raymond Orozco would not speculate on what caused the collapse. Neither would a spokeswoman for Clark Construction Group Inc. of Bethesda, Md., parent of one of the two construction companies working on the building.
Construction on the section that collapsed had progressed to three floors and only had the steel in place. Orozco said some workers fell from the second and third floors.
Three men were in critical condition at Cook County Hospital. Two other men were in serious condition and another was in fair condition.
The identity of the dead men was not immediately confirmed, said Tony Brucci of the Cook County medical examiner's office.
Companies working at the site had previously been fined for safety rule violations, said John Hermanson, a spokesman for the Occupational Safety and Health Administration.
Pitt Des Moines Inc., the company that employed the accident victims,
was fined $30,000 in May for allowing employees to work more than 25 feet up without safety nets or belts and for failing to use "tag" lines that help guide loads, he said.
Pitt, headquartered in Pittsburgh, refused to comment Wednesday.
Postal worker Sam Bullock said he was across the street when he heard a loud noise.
"We saw the beams and the people falling. It was just a domino effect. It was horrible," he said.
Firefighters first feared workers might be trapped in the rubble, but postal service spokesman Mark Rask said all workers had been accounted for.
Santa Cruz Sentinel California 1993-11-04