Pennsylvania man rescued after being trapped in aggregate pit

Pennsylvania man rescued after being trapped in aggregate pit

Yesterday, a workplace accident occurred when a Pennsylvania man became stuck in a stone pit in Union County, New Jersey, where he stayed for two hours before being rescued by emergency rescue workers. Luckily, the man did not appear to have any serious injuries, police said.

Reportedly, the 55-year-old from Easton, Pennsylvania, was working at Clinton Block Co. and went down into the pit to unclog an auger when some stone around him collapsed and trapped the lower half of his body. The man finally called 911 after being trapped in the pit for more than an hour, a spokesman for Clinton First Aid & Rescue Squad said.

Many local authorities and rescue teams came to the man’s aid and were able to free him after they set up a vacuum system that removed the rocks that had him pinned. A ladder was then lowered to the man so he could climb out. The spokesman for Clinton First Aid & Rescue Squad said the strategy was effective but time consuming.

The 55-year-old was immediately taken to a local hospital to be evaluated, but his status is currently unknown. Rescue workers were concerned that the man could have suffered from crush injury syndrome because of the amount of time he was trapped under rocks in the pit. Crush syndrome can be very serious and is common to people who have been trapped under rubble following earthquakes. It involves major shock and renal failure of skeletal muscles after the crushing material is lifted from a person’s body.

While this was a workplace accident, local news reporters said that someone from the Occupational Safety and Health Administration office in Avenel, New Jersey, said that they were aware of the incident, but an investigation was unlikely because only one person was involved and there were no apparent injuries.

Although it is not known why the rocks collapsed around the man in this aggregate pit, or if his employer was at all to blame, it is entirely possible that the man could be eligible for workers’ compensation if any injuries resulted from the incident that make it difficult for him to work.

If you have been injured on the job, an experienced personal injury attorney can help determine if you are eligible for workers’ compensation, or if another route would be more beneficial to you.

Source: The Express-Times, “Easton man rescued apparently uninjured after being trapped in Clinton Block aggregate pit,” Stephen J. Novak, 4/26/2011.