NBC

‘Tragic’: Neighbors Say Construction Workers Death Could Have Been Prevented

“I was just worried maybe this could have been prevented,” Jesse Delgado said.

Some El Cajon neighbors say the death of a man on a construction site Monday could have been prevented.

Despite efforts to save him, the 51-year-old died after a concrete wall collapsed on top of him just after 12 p.m.

“I just saw the rescue vehicles over here and knew something bad had happened,” neighbor Jesse Delgado said.

The site remains closed. For how long, has not yet been determined.

There are many theories why this wall collapsed: this winter's heavy rains, the trench dug alongside it, a faulty design--just to name a few.

But Cal/Occupational Safety and Health Administration's (Cal-OSHA) investigation is just beginning and the cause has not been determined yet.

For roughly and hour and 20 minutes, Heartland Fire and Rescue used hammers, jack hammers and the jaws of life to bust through three tons of concrete and block.

Despite their efforts, the man was crushed to death beneath the 30-foot section of wall.

"Tragic. About all you can say is tragic,” neighbor Bob Millar said.

Another worker hurt his back and leg trying to get out of the way. His injuries were not life threatening.

The victims were not working on the wall that collapsed. They were standing in a 30-inch trench dug alongside of it.

The collapsed wall was built along the back of some single family homes along North Pierce Street some time ago.

Neighbors told NBC 7, for three and a half months crews have been working on the site and many times, were stopped by rain delays.

“I was just worried maybe this could have been prevented,” Jesse Delgado said.

Neighbors said this is the first such accident.

Southland Paving is doing the work in the area for a Mercedes Dealership but declined to comment about the accident Monday night.

NBC 7 also checked Cal-OSHA's online records and did not fine any indication that Southland has any past or current construction site violations.

Contact Us