PORTER, Texas - One person was killed and another person was injured Friday in a construction accident at a water tower in Porter.
The deceased victim was identified as Felipe Marentes, according to the office of the Precinct 4 Justice of the Peace. Marentes, 52, was from Kyle, Texas.
The general manager of the Porter Special Utility District said during a press conference that he heard a "loud clinging noise" around 7:15 a.m., ran toward the noise and was instructed to call for help.
“(It) Originally sounded like a couple pieces of metal were banging around,” Tram said.
Emergency crews arrived around 7:30 a.m. and found one person was pinned under a large piece of metal, said Assistant Fire Chief Pamphil, with the Porter Fire Department.
The other person was taken to a hospital. His condition was not immediately known.
Two other workers escaped uninjured, officials said.
Carol Reed, who lives nearby, said crews have been working on building the water tower for the last month or so. The bottom half of the water tower was done and authorities said four workers were inside when chaos broke out.
@mctxsheriff and Fire/EMS are on the scene of an industrial accident in Porter TX. Constructions crews assembling a water well when piece of side wall broke free and landed on the crew inside the well. 2 employees not injured, 1 seriously injured and 1 male is deceased. pic.twitter.com/EVHuw8VgiP — MCTXSheriff (@MCTXSheriff) July 6, 2018
“I heard the metal on metal noise -- a boom,” Reed said.
Reed’s son, who works construction and has dealt with water towers before, said he knew something was wrong.
“The panel was going up,” Kevin Reed said, referring to a large piece of metal that he said a crane was lifting. “It was just dangling, then all of a sudden out of nowhere, it just collapsed into the tank. The workers were running around frantic as I came around here. You could hear the other two guys up in the tank banging and saying, ‘Don’t move the crane. Don’t do this. Don’t do that.' I then called 911.”
Video from SKY2 showed the aftermath of the incident. It appeared one piece of the dome was laying at the bottom of the tank.
Tram said contractors with Phoenix Fabricators, a national company based in Avon, Indiana, according to its website, had been working to erect a 150-foot, 50,000-gallon water storage tank when the accident happened.
The cause of the accident is under investigation.
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