SOUTH BEND, Ind. (AP) — Indiana's workplace safety agency is investigating the death of a Notre Dame student after the tower from which he was filming football practice fell over.
Declan Sullivan of Long Grove, Ill., died at a hospital on Wednesday after the scissor lift the 20-year-old student was in was in toppled amid winds gusting over 50 mph.
Deputy Coroner Chuck Hurley told WSBT news that he ruled the death an accident and said that the cause was blunt force trauma to the head, chest and abdomen.
Indiana Occupational Safety and Health Administration spokesman Marc Lotter said Thursday the agency had an investigator on the scene in South Bend. He says it's too early to say when the agency, which has the authority to levee fines, might release a report.
Walt Temple, who has a tree service company, often uses 60 foot aerial lift devices. He says there are many considerations before putting anyone up in a lift. They look at the firmness of the ground, and if there's been any rain.
“Then we look at the wind, and if it's above 25 mph we just don't it. We just don't go up there,” Temple said.
Temple said scissor lifts are typically used indoors or on cement. One manufacture of scissor lifts, HHS Wire, says on their website the device should not be used in winds above twenty five miles per hour.
WSBT's Alyssa Rossome contributed to this report.