Monroe County Sheriff’s deputies determined that the workers became trapped when they went underneath a newly paved road to see why it was settling.
The three workers were identified as Elway Gray, Louis O’Keefe, and Robert Wilson. Leonardo Moreno, a volunteer firefighter, was taken to Jackson Memorial Hospital in Miami as a result of his attempt to try and help rescue the three workers.
Two deputies were also taken to the hospital for observation for precautionary health measures. Homes in the area were also evacuated as a precautionary measure in order to bring in HAZMAT teams from Miami-Dade County for help.
Sheriff’s office officials are still trying to determine the cause of death for the three workers, but believe that it was a likely a combination of methane and hydrogen sulfite that caused their deaths.
Linda Seymour, a witness to the incident, said, “It’s horrific, I wouldn’t want to see this no matter where I was at. I feel bad for the workers and families that had to go through it”.
The incident remains under investigation.
The following information was provided by the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA):