Body Recovered After Brazos River Construction Accident

By: Matt Howerton, KWTX Email
By: Matt Howerton, KWTX Email

Rescuers recovered the body of a construction worker late Tuesday evening in the Brazos River in Waco.

The worker was reported missing after an accident on the site of the construction of the pedestrian bridge that will connect the Baylor University campus to the school’s new football stadium.

Divers were able to locate the body.

The person was pronounced dead just after 8:15 p.m. Tuesday.

Their identity has not yet been released.

The worker was tethered to what Waco police Sgt. W. Patrick Swanton described as a boom or a man-lift on a platform in the river when the boom toppled into the water.

A second man who was also pulled into the water was able to swim to safety and was taken to Providence Health Center in Waco for treatment of symptoms of hypothermia.

Police, firefighters and paramedics responded to the construction site at around 4 p.m. Tuesday.

The pedestrian bridge across the river is part of a package of infrastructure improvements for which the Waco City Council agreed to contribute $35 million, the largest economic contribution in McLennan County’s history.

The 45,000-seat stadium, scheduled for completion in time for the start of the 2014 season, is under construction on a 93-acre site just off Interstate 35 along the river.

In late July 2013, crews went to work to tear down Baylor’s Hughes-Dillard Alumni Center to make way the bridge after U.S. District Judge Walter S. Smith lifted a temporary restraining order that barred the school from razing the building.

Smith issued the order earlier that month in response to a lawsuit that a Baylor graduate filed over an agreement reached in June 2013 between the university and officials of the independent Baylor Alumni Association that cleared the way for demolition of the building.

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