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Man killed during construction work at Clarence TC Ching Athletics Complex

Published: Jul. 30, 2021 at 10:26 AM HST|Updated: Jul. 31, 2021 at 1:16 PM HST
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HONOLULU (HawaiiNewsNow) - An investigation is underway after a man was killed in a construction accident at the Clarence T.C. Ching Athletics Complex on the campus of University of Hawaii at Manoa.

The 30-year-old was part of a crew working on the football stadium remodel.

The workers involved in this accident were responsible for building 15 hospitality suites. UH officials say they were offloading material from a Matson trailer when one of the workers was crushed.

On Friday morning, workers could be seen cleaning up in a small lot just off Lower Campus Road.

Meanwhile, Hawaii’s Occupational Safety and Health office has launched an investigation.

Eva Ongoongotau, a member of the women’s basketball team, said she heard the sirens on campus Thursday night. “It’s just shocking. I feel like it’s a freak accident that’s not supposed to happen.”

The construction worker was killed about 7:30 p.m. after police sources say several stacks of steel plate cages fell off a pallet jack ― pinning him under the 5,000-pound load.

Coworkers used a fork lift to free the man, but it was too late.

“I was up here actually late last night when that happened,” said Rainbow Warriors football head coach Todd Graham. “It just breaks your heart, you know? And our thoughts and prayers to his family.”

UH officials confirm the victim was working for Roder, a company out of Germany. All construction at the Clarence T.C. Ching Athletics Complex had been suspended through the weekend.

The university also said the work crew involved in the accident, including the victim, were citizens of Great Britain.

In a statement a school spokesperson wrote:

“This is a terrible tragedy. The University of Hawaii offers its deepest condolences to the family, friends and coworkers of the victim. We stand with you in your grief. UH is committed to doing everything we can to assist in the investigation of this devastating event.”

UH Athletics fast-tracked the project to remodel the football field in December after the abrupt closure of Aloha Stadium. The Rainbow Warriors are scheduled to christen the new and improved field on Sept. 4 against Portland State.

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