FAIRFIELD, Conn. – While taking a cast-iron tub from the first to second floor of a Fairfield home, four construction subcontractors were injured when the temporary staircase they were using collapsed Thursday morning, fire officials said.
The four men were taken to Bridgeport Hospital and St. Vincent's Hospital for serious but not life-threatening injuries.
The house at 138 South Gate Lane was undergoing a major remodeling project, and there were no other staircases in the house when fire and first responders arrived at the scene shortly after 9:10 a.m.
“Fire crews that arrived on scene had to construct rope haul systems to actually package and remove the victims out of the basement,” said Fairfield Assistant Fire Chief Scott Bisson. The first responders used a rescue method called a “stokes basket” in which they lowered a backboard into a space and used a rope pulley to bring out the injured parties, he said.
This rescue system is typically used in confined spaces, Bisson said. There were four firefighters and a paramedic in the basement with the four injured construction workers, he said.
The four men had been halfway up to the second floor when the staircase collapsed down to the basement, according to Bisson. Witnesses told first responders that they had seen the heads of one of the workers on the stairs.
The four workers were subcontractors from two companies, All American Heating and AC Connection. Bisson was not sure how long the house had been under construction, but he said the owners had made reports to the Fairfield Building Department and the Fire Marshal's office.
All four men were out of the basement by 9:53 a.m., about 40 minutes after the Fire Department first received the call, Bisson said.
The house at 138 South Gate Lane was bought by Southgate LLC for $650,000 in May. It was first built in 1939. It is located off Pequot Avenue near the Westport border.
The federal Occupational Safety and Health Administration was called, and officials were en route to the scene.
Read the original story on the rescue here on The Daily Voice.