Investigation continues in death at Holcim plant

Friday, April 17, 2009 ~ Updated 5:57 PM

BLOOMSDALE, Mo. -- Authorities continue to investigate the death of a Wood River, Ill., construction worker who died at the Holcim cement plant earlier in the week.

At around 3:15 p.m. Tuesday an ambulance responded to the plant near Ste. Genevieve after it was reported that Vincent Lavite, 38, had fallen from scaffolding. Lavite was airlifted to Barnes-Jewish Hospital in St. Louis, where he died in the emergency room.

Lavite was pronounced dead at 4:51 p.m. Tuesday. He was a subcontractor who worked for Thyssen-Krupp Safeway Scaffold Co.

While it could be six weeks before the Mine Safety and Health Administration investigation is complete, Ste. Genevieve coroner Leo Basler said the cause of death appears to be accidental.

"We wish to express our sympathy to our colleague's family and the many friends he had on this project," said Holcim spokesperson Nancy Tully. "We will keep all of them in our thoughts and prayers."

Tully said that while she could not comment further on the incident because it is an ongoing investigation, she said the Holcim plant is committed to safety for all on site.

"We all work everyday to create an environment that is safe for all," Tully said. "At the Bloomsdale site safety education and training remain critical to our efforts."

An e-mail and phone message left with Thyssen-Krupp Safeway was not returned.

The $1 billion Holcim cement plant began construction in 2006 and opened this year. The facility produces about 4 million tons of metric cement on an annual basis.


Pertinent address:

2942 U.S. 61 Bloomsdale, MO

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