June 22, 2024
Local News

Authorities investigating fatal fall in Crest Hill

CREST HILL – Authorities are investigating the death of a worker who fell Sunday from the roof of a building under construction.

Shortly before 10 a.m., Fernando V. Gamez, 42, of Sioux City, Iowa, was placing tiles on the roof decking of a building for Rich Products in the 21000 block of Division Street in Crest Hill when he fell from a beam.

"It appears he wasn't harnessed and got too close to the edge," Deputy Police Chief Ed Clark said Monday.

Gamez's co-workers called 911 and he was taken to Presence Saint Joseph Medical Center in Joliet, where he died at 10:51 a.m., according to the Will County Coroner's Office. An autopsy was scheduled for Tuesday.

Occupational Safety & Health Administration spokeswoman Rhonda Burke said the agency has opened an investigation into Gamez's employer, Ortner Construction of Danbury, Iowa.

Ortner Construction was previously inspected in 2014 by OSHA’s office in Peoria and was cited for lack of frequent and regular inspections of job site, equipment and materials and for employees not standing firmly on the floor of an aerial lift, according to Burke.

OSHA standards require that an effective form of fall protection be in use when workers perform construction activities 6 feet or more above the next lower level, she said.