ORLANDO, Fla. (FOX 35 WOFL) - The I-4 Ultimate project has been suspended, following the death of a worker who was struck by a drainage pipe at a construction site near Winter Park.
Orange County Fire Rescue responded to South Wymore Road and Riddle Drive on Monday around 1 p.m., after calls were received alerting authorites that a worker had been injured.
During an afternoon news conference, officials said that the victim, a man who worked for SGL Construction, was struck by the large, iron pipe as it was being moved. He transported to AdventHealth in Orlando.
"The patient, a 59-year old, was unconscious, unresponsive, suffering from an apparent head injury," said OCFR Spokesperson Mike Jachles. "Crews tried to aggressively resuscitate the man and transported him to Advent hospital Orlando."
Doctors declared the victim, who was not immediately identified, deceased. It remained unclear what led up to the incident, which happened in a mandatory hard hat construction zone, Jachles said.
"This iron pipe, 18 inches by 20 inches long, was being moved. I can't speculate...if it was being moved on or off the truck, or how it was being moved, but that pipe apparently came into contact with the victim,causing the injury," said Jachles. "This is a drainage pipe used for water drainage in the highway project."
A spokesperson with SGL said they have halted all production work down the 21-mile I-4 Ultimate construction project, to give the company time to investigate and allow their employees time to mourn.
"We are deeply saddened by the loss of our colleague," read a statement from SGL. "Our focus now is to provide support to the family and our workers during this difficult time."
"The guys are out here almost everyday. I've gotten to know most of them, see them. They're a bunch of good guys. Nice fellas," said Tim Devoe, a nearby resident. "I'm more worried about the worker's family. I just feel bad for the guy. That's my main concern.
There have been at least four fatalities on the I-4 Ultimate project, since it began in 2015. Monday's incident is now being investigated by the Occupational Safety and Health Administration.