Bridge workers rescued 100 ft. up after being trapped by collapsing rebar

Updated May 11, 2017
A PennDOT rendering (left) and Fall 2016 project update image of the bridge project.A PennDOT rendering (left) and Fall 2016 project update image of the bridge project.

Two workers at a highway construction site in Union County, Pa., were trapped when steel rebar on a bridge pier collapsed the morning of May 1, Penn Live reports.

One construction worker was able to free himself, but emergency responders were called out to free the other, according to Pennsylvania Department of Transportation (PennDOT) District 3 spokesman David Thompson.

Emergency officials told the news agency that four workers were securing steel rebar for a concrete pour when the rebar collapsed, trapping two workers 100 feet in the air. Thompson said it took emergency responders an hour to free one of the trapped workers.

Neither worker had serious injuries, but both were taken to a local hospital to be evaluated.

The $156 million bridge is the first phase of the $670 million Central Susquehanna Valley Thruway (CVST) project, which includes construction of a 13-mille limited access highway connecting Route 147 in Northumberland with Routes 11 and 15 in Snyder County north of Selinsgrove. The expected completion date for the project is 2019, at which time the bridge will be more than 4,500 feet long with a peak elevation of 180 feet.

Thompson told the news agency that the Occupational Safety and Health Administration was on site, and work was been halted by the contractor, Trumbull Corp. of Pittsburgh, until the accident investigation is complete.