Construction worker killed during Tube extension project in Mid-Wilshire

A construction worker who worked on the Los Angeles Metro Purple Line expansion project in Mid-Wilshire on Wednesday died.

The Los Angeles County Metropolitan Transportation Authority confirmed the worker was killed while working at the future site of the Wilshire/La Brea subway station at 711 S. La Brea Ave.

The City of Los Angeles Fire Department responded to the construction site around 5:25 p.m. for a report of a worker who was trapped by a service car in the underground tunnel where work was underway.

Battalion Commander Kenneth Miller told KTLA that a 32-year-old man was killed when he was trapped under a service vehicle that transports equipment and personnel between the surface and the underground construction site. Crews were performing tunnel and train maintenance when the accident happened, Miller said.

The circumstances that led to the man being trapped are under investigation, but the death appears to be accidental, Miller said.

No other injuries were reported, but Miller said firefighters were monitoring the behavioral health of MTA workers and responding firefighters.

The California Division of Occupational Safety and Health (Cal/OSHA) will investigate the accident.

The construction site is part of MTA’s ongoing Purple Line Extension Project, which will extend the D subway line from Koreatown to West LA. The nine-mile project is being built in three sections, MTA said.

In a press release sent Wednesday night, Metro CEO Stephanie N. Wiggins called the death “a tragedy beyond words.” Wiggins said the MTA is working with all regulators to determine what led to the man’s death.

Twenty fire companies and more than 80 firefighters responded to the scene along with law enforcement and ambulances.

Alice F. Ponder