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Man's estate sues bridge company after fatal accident

Galveston is a city with a few very important bridges: the Old Galveston Causeway built in 1912 and now open to railroad traffic only; the New Galveston Causeway completed in 2008; and the Seawolf Parkway Bridge built in 1960. These bridges are critical linkage points.

Another critical linkage point on the other end of the country is the Ambassador Bridge which connects Detroit, Michigan, to Windsor, Canada. The estate of the man involved in a fatal accident as he was working on the Ambassador Bridge is suing the bridge company and the company for which he worked for wrongful death.

In January 2012, the man was tightening a cable on the bridge. The tension on the cable caused it to snap. The lawsuit alleges that numerous safety devices were not in place, including a rescue boat and driver, a harness, a buoy and life jackets. The lawsuit also alleges that the scaffolding under the bridge was not safe and was not installed in the proper manner.

An Occupational Safety and Health Administration spokesperson told media sources that a company that does construction work over waterways must have life jackets, a lifesaving boat and a buoy near the work site.

The bridge company was the general contractor, according to the lawsuit. The lawsuit also stated that the sub-contractor -- the company that the man worked for -- did not install the scaffolding properly and that because of the way it was installed, injury was sure to happen.

Media sources state that the company the man worked for had received citations for violations that involved work over waterways in unrelated cases.

The man's body was not recovered until March 24, more than two months after the accident. The body was found near Zug Island. After the accident in January, the man's family told media sources that the man had a 7-year-old daughter and his fiancée was pregnant with his child.

Source: Detroit Free Press, "Lawsuit filed in death of man working on Ambassador Bridge," Gina Damron, April 15, 2012

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