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Minnesota Construction Worker Killed on the Job

Lauren Lopez3 years ago

61 year-old Johnny Valek was killed Tuesday morning at the construction site of the new Saints ballpark in St. Paul, Minnesota where he was working. Valek, who was due to retire in a year, was said by colleagues to have expressed worry about the stability of the 650,000 square foot structure they were demolishing.

About the Minnesota Construction Accident

  • According to the Star Tribune, Valek had 25 years of experience in the construction industry, and was an employee of Rachel Contracting of St. Michael Minnesota at the time of his death. 
  • The contracting company was in the middle of a demolition project of the old Gillette/Diamond Products building. The land was being cleared for the construction of a new ballpark.
  • Authorities reported that the accident occurred around 8 a.m. on Tuesday when a 10- by 30-foot piece of the concrete structure, that had been supporting the building, fell without notice onto Valek’s machine resulting in his death.
  • It took five hours for the fire department’s advanced technical team to recover Valek’s body. 

Investigation of Rachel Contracting

  • Investigators with Minnesota Occupational Safety and Health Administration on Tuesday started efforts to review factors that may have potentially lead, or contributed, to the worker’s death.
  • Rachel Contracting has been inspected only once in the past five years, which took place in July 2010.
  • There were no violations found and no citations were issued.
Construction Fatality Statistics

According to the U.S. Occupational Safety and Health Administration:

  • The leading causes of worker deaths on construction sites were falls, followed by electrocution, struck by object, and caught-in/between.
  • Fatal work injuries involving contractors accounted for 12 percent of all fatal work injuries in 2011.
  • 4,609 workers were killed on the job in 2011,almost 90 a week or nearly 13 deaths every day.
Contact an Experienced Workplace Accident Attorney

Thomas J. Henry fight to protect the rights of workplace injury victims. If you or someone you love has been injured or killed on the job, contact Thomas J. Henry. The goal of our offices is to not only protect your rights, but to send a message so the same tragedy does not happen again. We represent clients/victims all over the country.


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