Worker killed at Baltimore wastewater treatment plant

A worker at the City of Baltimore’s Back River Wastewater Treatment plant died Monday after being struck by an excavator, according to Baltimore County fire officials.

The worker, Transito Rodriguez Cruz, 36, of Adelphi, was working in a trench on a construction project at the treatment plant around noon Monday when he was struck by the bucket of an excavator, fire officials said.

He was taken to the Johns Hopkins Bayview Medical Center, where he was pronounced dead. The incident is under investigation by both the Baltimore Environmental Police and the Maryland Occupational Safety and Health Administration.

A Department of Public Works spokesman called the death “tragic” and said that the department would do everything it can to ensure it won’t happen again. Jeffrey Raymond said the department’s director, Rudolph S. Chow, “stresses safety for all employees to make sure that all of our work sites are safe.”

Raymond said Cruz was working for a company contracted by the city when he was killed; Raymond did not release the name of the company involved.

It’s the second trench-related death on a construction site this year. In June, 20-year-old construction worker, Kyle Hancock, died when a deep trench where he was working on a sewer line in Baltimore’s Clifton Park neighborhood collapsed around him.

In that case, the Maryland Occupational Safety and Health agency said the company failed to train its crews to recognize and avoid unsafe conditions and did not conduct adequate daily inspections of the site.

ctkacik@baltsun.com

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