Wall collapse at historic Mockingbird Valley Road home kills 1 - wave3.com-Louisville News, Weather & Sports

Wall collapse at historic Mockingbird Valley Road home kills worker

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Rick Tonini Rick Tonini

LOUISVILLE, KY (WAVE) – A day at work turns tragic when a wall caves in and kills a contractor fixing up a historic home in Mockingbird Valley.

The Jefferson County Coroner's Office says 33-year-old James Laslie of Crestwood died from multiple blunt force injuries. He worked for Griffin Plumbing and Piping.

Tuesday afternoon Laslie was working on a home that is part of the Old Duncan Estate on Mockingbird Valley Road near Mellwood Avenue. "This home has been vacant for sometime," said Rick Tonini, spokesman for St. Matthews Fire Department.

"It can't be tore down so it is being refurbished," said Tonini. "It was in pretty bad shape when they started."

A few construction crews were there working on some repairs. Tonini says Laslie was working on waterproofing the basement and was using a backhoe. Laslie then stepped into a six foot deep trench to remove dirt. That's when Tonini says one of the three concrete walls surrounding a window collapsed.

"Apparently they undermined this three wall containment and when it did, it tilted away from the home and when it did it crushed the operator against the side wall of the open trench," said Tonini.

When EMS arrived they pronounced Laslie dead at the scene. A rescue quickly turned into a recovery and for nearly three hours, fire crews safely worked to remove the man's body.

OSHA and Louisville Metro Police were on the scene conducting investigations. No one else was hurt.

Laslie's funeral arrangements are pending.

 (Copyright 2011 WAVE News. All rights reserved.)