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One Rescued, One Remains Trapped in Sioux Falls Building Collapse


construction worker in protective gear in trench

According to USA Today, a construction worker remains trapped under debris after a building under construction collapses in Sioux Falls, South Dakota, on Friday morning.

Woman, Dog Rescued from Rubble after Three Hours

Rescue crews were called to the incident at around 10:30 a.m. local time when they discovered a completely destroyed building. The vacant building, which was previously the Copper Lounge, was being remodeled to host a drugstore. Crews are working to excavate the rubble to find the trapped worker. The man had been making noises to make it easier for rescuers to locate him in the debris.

According to USA Today, the previous owner said a construction worker and a woman were in the process of replacing a brick wall inside the building. Rescue crews were able to save the 22-year-old woman, who was on the phone with her mother throughout the rescue process. Officials freed the woman after three hours. The woman was hospitalized with injuries to her leg, but a spokeswoman for the hospital says she is in good condition.

Before the woman was removed from the rubble, rescue crews were able to free a dog that was trapped underneath debris, reports USA Today.

According to the Argus Leader, the area Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) director is monitoring the situation. In addition, the construction company working on the building has no prior workplace safety violations.

On the Job Accident Statistics

The following information is provided by the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA).

  • 4,821 workers died on the job in 2014.
  • Fatal falls accounted for 359 construction worker fatalities in 2014. The “Fatal Four” leading causes of private sector worker deaths are:
    • Falls – 359 out of 899 total deaths in construction in 2014 (39.9%)
    • Electrocutions – 74 (8.2%)
    • Struck by Object – 73 (8.1%)
    • Caught-in/between – 39 (4.3%)
  • Fatal work injuries involving contractors accounted for 17 percent of all fatal work injuries in 2014.

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