At least four people were caught in an accident when a 35-foot rebar wall collapsed during construction work on the North Torrey Pines Living and Learning Neighborhood on Thursday, July 25. Those injured were sent to nearby Scripps Memorial Hospital, and construction has since been halted for the day.
It is unclear what caused Thursday morning’s incident where, according to a UCSD spokesperson in an NBC 7 news article, “The rebar collapsed and injured one worker in the head,” leaving him with serious head injuries.
The San Diego police and fire departments responded to a call on the incident around 8:30 in the morning to assess the situation.
Frank Polizzi, spokesman for the California Occupational Safety and Health Administration, told the Los Angeles Times that at least two workers were seriously injured and one shortly passed away while at Scripps.
Family members have identified the victim as 32-year-old Sergio Cruz, a father from Tecate, Mexico, described by many of his colleagues as hardworking. He leaves behind a young daughter.
Cal/OSHA officials confirmed that the people hurt were all construction workers for Clark Construction, the university’s contractor for the two-year project, which recently hit the 50 percent completion mark.
In a statement issued by the company to the Los Angeles Times, Clark Constructions Senior Vice President Carlos Gonzalez said, “We take all matters involving the safety of our workforce, our job sites, and the public seriously. Our deepest sympathies are with this individual’s family, friends, and co-workers during this incredibly difficult time.”
Clark Construction has since launched an investigation of the work site to determine the exact cause of the incident.
The Guardian will continue to update this page as the story unfolds.
Update: The article has been updated to include additional information, including the identity of the victim who passed away.
Photo courtesy of Jacob Sutherland.