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Florida construction worker feared dead in garage collapse

December 21, 2021 GMT

CLEARWATER, Fla. (AP) — A construction worker is feared dead after a portion of a concrete stairwell in a Florida parking garage collapsed on him, officials said.

The worker was doing stairwell repairs Monday when two levels of flooring and stairs fell, trapping him, according to Clearwater Fire & Rescue Division Chief John Klinefelter.

“At this point, it’s looking more like a recovery operation than a rescue operation,” Klinefelter told WTSP.

Another worker was not injured in the incident.

An excavator was brought to the site overnight to remove the concrete slabs.

“We’re taking a slow, methodical and safe approach,” Klinefelter told WFLA. “We’ve spoken with the family, and we’ve explained everything to them — what’s going to be happening step-by-step from this point forward, what’s going to be happening so they know what to expect.”

The garage is owned by Plymouth LLC. It was evacuated and nearby buildings appeared unaffected, officials said.

The city’s building department is reviewing the garage’s inspection history, officials said.