OAK ISLAND -- One man is dead after a girder collapsed during construction of a bridge on the east end of Oak Island. The accident happened around 11:45 a.m. on Wednesday, according to Oak Island Mayor Johnie Vereen. Vereen said workers were laying concerte support beams underneath the bridge when one of the beams fell. Vereen said it was believed a crane was placing a beam under the bridge, and the beam hit one that was already in place, which then fell. The construction worker who was killed, Jose Montalvo of Sumter, SC, was harnassed to the beams and was dragged down along with the beam that collapsed. Ricky Bryant of Supply suffered critical injuries and was airlifted from the site and later underwent surgery. Anther worker sustained minor injuries.The three men all worked for Charlotte-based Lee Construction Company of the Carolinas. The company has not responded to inquiries about the incident. Lee Construction, The Department of Transportation and the Occupational Safety and Health Administration are expected to conduct their own investigations. Construction on the bridge has been underway for about one year. Vereen said the expected completion date is December 2009, but construction is ahead of schedule.
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