The day following the tragic partial collapse of a Houston high-rise office building under construction, the remains of three workers killed in the Harvey Builders construction site accident remain in the rubble. The 15-story building remains too unstable for emergency personnel to enter, leaving the bodies buried in the rubble from a stairwell collapse. Harvey Builders, together with technical experts from the Houston Fire Department are working to find a way to stabilize the structure.
240 workers were at the construction site at the time of the accident. As of Tuesday morning, they all are accounted for, according to representatives of Harvey Builders. The names of the workers who died in the horrific Houston construction site accident have not been released nor has the name of one hospitalized victim.
Over the course of the past day, a clearer picture has developed regarding how the collapse occurred in the first instance. The initial collapse occurred in the stairwell between the 13th and 14th floors, near the top of the office building being built for Marathon Oil. Nearly instantaneously, the initial collapse caused a cascading effect, with floor upon floor of the stairway collapsing in on itself.
In addition to the three workers killed in the Harvey Builders construction site accident, one crew member was taken to an area hospital with undisclosed injuries. As of Monday night, the injured worker was said to be in stable condition by hospital officials.
Houston Public Works has advised that inspectors from that agency were at the Harvey Builders construction site Monday morning, only hours before the calamity. According to a spokesperson for Houston Public Works, the inspectors “had nothing to report” in regard to the building under construction. The spokesperson additionally noted that the agency had performed an inspection of the structure three days earlier, on Friday.
A question has arisen as to whether two inspections of the same construction site on two consecutive business days is a standard practice or indicative of something awry. Nonetheless, Houston Public Works has said nothing beyond that (at least as of this time) there is nothing to report from the Monday inspection.
The Marathon Oil building project got underway in early 2020. There were some intermittent delays in constructing the building as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic. The planned opening date for the building had been the second half of 2021.
When learning of the deadly collapse at the company’s building site, Marathon Oil issued a statement indicating that it was “saddened” to receive news of the collapse. The company added that it had extended an offer of assistance to the general contractor, Harvey Builders, as the builder responds to the fatal construction site accident.
For its part, in the immediate aftermath of the collapse, Harvey Builder maintains that it “was doing everything (we) were supposed to do” in regard to proper and safe construction practices. In fact, early investigation indicates that the installation of the staircase may have been inadequate in some manner, resulting in the collapse. The facts surrounding the accident will be better fleshed out once investigators are able to better access the structure.
If you’ve lost a loved one in a construction site accident like the Harvey Builders building collapse in Houston, the legal team at The Doan Law Firm stands ready to protect your important legal interests. The same holds true if you were injured in an incident like the Houston construction site accident involving the Marathon Oil building.
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