1 missing, feared dead after concrete stairwell collapses in Clearwater

National

PINELLAS COUNTY, Fla. (WFLA) — More than two dozen first responders were called to a structure collapse near Enterprise Road and Countryside Boulevard Monday afternoon.

Workers were conducting stairwell repairs around 12:30 p.m. when a portion of the stairwell collapsed, trapping one worker, the City of Clearwater said.

“At this point, it’s looking more like a recovery operation than a rescue operation,” Clearwater Fire Rescue Division Chief John Klinefelter said. “If we get any updated information that can definitely change.”

As of 8:00 p.m., one worker remains missing and is feared dead. Those involved in the accident were not Tampa Bay Water employees.

“Our thoughts and prayers are with the construction workers and their families as emergency managers respond,” Tampa Bay Water General Manager Chuck Carden said.

Tampa Bay Water, whose office is adjacent to the parking garage, said the structure collapse is not a part of its facility. The company confirmed they are one of several companies that lease space in the parking garage.

The Clearwater Police Department said Enterprise Road was closed between Countryside Boulevard and the rear entrance of Lowes.

The City of Clearwater said in a statement to News Channel 8 that a private contractor remains on scene trying to secure equipment to begin dismantling the stairwell from the top down before any recovery process can begin. 

This is a developing story. Stay up to date on the latest from News Channel 8 on-air and on the go with the free WFLA News Channel 8 mobile app.

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