Ogalalla, NE Water Tank Collapse, Sept 1908

CRUSHED UNDER WATER TANK

WORKMEN AND BOYS AT OGALALLA ARE SEVERELY INJURED.

CONCRETE FOUNDATION FALLS

One Man and Boy May Lose Limb – Others Are Hurt More or Less Seriously – News of the State.

OGALALLA, Neb. Sept. 3. – This place was the scene of a most distressing accident about 11:30 yesterday morning. While P. Girmann was doing some plumbing underneath his water tank, assisted by A. Fernstrom and Franc Kalwiet, the concrete foundation gave way, and the walls and tank together with a great volume of water crushed the workmen below.
Kalwiet was partially buried under the debris, and was terribly bruised. It is feared that he will be obliged to lose one limb at the hip. A. Fernstrom was forced through a panel door and his arm broken. P. Girmann is supposed to have had some ribs broken and it is feared he is hurt internally. His condition is regarded as critical.

The most pitiful feature of the accident was that Mr. Girmann’s two little boys were with the men, and the tank in falling nearly severed a limb of one of the boys. The other little fellow escaped with a broken collar bone.

The concrete foundation was about five feet high and it supported a huge steel tank, six feet high and six feet wide. It was nearly full of water at the time. It required an hour to extricate Kalwiet from the concrete blocks which pinioned him down, just below the thighs.

The Nebraska State Journal, Lincoln NE 4 Sept 1908