Construction Accident At West Campus Parking Garage Leaves Two Injured

Imag of the damage in the parking garage at West Campus.
Accident: Two construction workers were injured April 15 at another construction accident at the West Campus parking garage when a beam that was being lifted fell, according to Miami-Dade Fire Rescue officials.

Two construction workers were injured Friday at another construction accident at the Miami Dade College West Campus parking garage when a beam that was being lifted fell, according to Erika Benitez, public information officer for Miami-Dade Fire Rescue.   

Officials said the accident happened at around 2:30 p.m. while the workers were on an elevated platform. Both of the injured men were transported to the hospital. One of the construction workers was seen walking into the ambulance under his own power. The other worker was taken out of the construction area in a stokes basket.

Miami-Dade Fire Rescue officials said the two men were not pinned by the beam, however, their condition was unknown on Friday.  

“We got out of class and we went to the windows to go see what was going on and we just saw

the ambulances and the helicopters,” said Miguel Balbuena, a 16-year-old dual enrollment student at MDC West Campus.

No students or college staff were injured during the incident on Friday. The accident did not affect the campuses main building so classes remained open.  

A message on the MDC West Campus website said: An incident occurred this afternoon at the construction site of the new parking garage at Miami Dade College-West. Authorities have assessed the situation and determined that all areas of the campus are safe. MDC-West will remain open for normal operations on Friday and Saturday, April 15th and 16th.  

The garage was expected to reopen this November. A meeting is scheduled to take place this Saturday at West Campus between the construction company, safety officials and college administrators to discuss how to move forward.

The new five-story parking garage is slated to include 1,500 parking spaces, an amphitheatre, and an outdoor area.

It was originally expected to open in December of 2012 until a horrific garage collapse on October 10, 2012 killed four construction workers. The garage was 3/4th of the way completed at the time of the accident.

Killed during the accident were Robert Budhoo, 53; Carlos Hurtado de Mendoza, 48; Jose Calderon, 60; and Samuel Perez, 53.

On May 6, 2015  MDC agreed on a $33 million settlement against Ajax Building Corp. and several other subcontractors in connection with the accident.

The Haskell Co. is the current construction company working on the new parking facility. Work at 3800 NW 115th Ave. in Doral started four months ago.The old garage was dismantled before work at the new garage started.  
Staff writers Daniela Molina, Jaynell Perera and Zayrha Rodriguez contributed to this report.

Maria Vizcaino

Maria Elena Vizcaino, 20, is a mass communications/journalism major at MDC-West. Vizcaino, who graduated from Ronald W. Reagan Doral Senior High School in 2015, will serve as a briefing editor for The Reporter during the 2016 summer semester. She aspires to become an investigative print journalist.