The widow of a construction worker who died on the job due to a fall has filed a wrongful death lawsuit against the construction company, two subcontractors and the property owner.
The Mercury News reports that Irma Vargas, the wife of Jose Luis Delgado Lopez, 34, has filed the lawsuit against Level 10 Construction, Webcor Builders, Alamillo Rebar Inc, and Central Wolfe LLC in Sunnyvale, California.
According to the lawsuit, Delgado died last November as a result of a 76-foot fall from a new clover-shaped building that has plans to be leased by Apple, Inc.
Delgado was employed by Alamillo Rebar, who performs contract work installing rebar and iron reinforcements for concrete structures. Delgado was required to walk onto a plywood platform six stories high to reach rebar cables, and was unaware that supports beneath the boards had been removed.
An OSHA file reports that Webcor workers were instructed to remove the supports to save money. The morning of his death, Delgado was assigned to walk on the unsupported plywood platform to trim rebar and cables to prepare the structure for concrete work.
When the plywood collapsed, Delgado fell to the ground. Several other construction workers heard his screams. At 7:51 a.m. he was found alive. By 8:02 a.m., he was pronounced dead.
Vargas told The Mercury News that she began getting frantic calls shortly after the incident from people who knew her husband. They explained there had been a terrible accident at the job site. Vargas immediately began calling her husband, but the calls went unanswered. Screenshots from Delgado’s phone showed the missed calls from his wife, whose name was saved as “My Love.”
Shortly after 10 a.m., Vargas’s sister tried to call Alamillo Rebar, but was put on hold and could never get transferred through to someone at Level 10 Construction. Finally, Vargas looked up Level 10 projects on the company’s website and located the address to the Sunnyvale job site.
“When I got there a guy came out and said, ‘Can I help you?’ I said ‘I’m looking for my husband. Someone called and said he got in an accident.’ He went back in, came back out and said, ‘Sorry to tell you, but he’s deceased,’” she said.
It was noon before Vargas was advised of her husband’s death, which had happened four hours earlier.
“I just stood there for I don’t how long — half an hour,” Vargas recounted, “and then they told me I needed to go.”
Delgado was the father of three children, ages 6, 4 and 1.
Vargas is seeking damages for emotional distress, wrongful death, negligent survival and premises liability.