An Oregon construction company is reeling from its first workplace death since its founding in 1939 – and the victim’s family is reeling from the man’s loss.
News sources say Stephen Smith, a truck driver employed by Hamilton Construction Company, was killed in an incident Saturday at the Beltline/Delta Highway interchange. According to the Eugene Springfield Fire Department, Smith was pinned between an excavator and a barrier. He was transported to Riverbend hospital, where he later died.
Smith had worked for the company for nearly ten years. Co-workers described him as a loving family man.
Smith's death was the first in company history. On its website, Hamilton Construction Company says “Hamilton is a big family and we take care of one another. The culture starts from the top and trickles down – our owners are active employees, management pays attention to the needs of each person and project, and every person is given the support and autonomy required to do their job efficiently and effectively.”
Hamilton said it is cooperating with Oregon Occupational Safety and Health, which is investigating the incident.
Work on the two-year-long, $20 million project to reconfigure the Beltline/Delta Interchange is expected to resume on Friday.