4 hurt in fall from roof in Attleboro

Attleboro, Massachusetts

Four people were taken to the hospital Thursday after falling off wooden staging in Attleboro.

Authorities said the men were working on the roof of a two-story duplex on Conner Court at about 10:30 a.m. when a ladder they were using failed.

All four victims were transported to Rhode Island Hospital. One of the victims was knocked unconscious, but emergency responders said by the time they got there, he was awake and alert.

Joseph Fernandes is a contractor in Attleboro. The four workers weren't working for his company, but he heard what happened and stopped by.

"It's scary. It's definitely scary. You feel bad for the workers who are injured," he said. "I was just actually thinking for the homeowner. I was told that the roof was wide open. We got a lot of rain coming so I was actually trying to see if I could help the homeowner in any way, put a top on it."

Fire officials said the workers were on staging attached to extension ladders, one of which appeared to have collapsed.

"I'm seeing over there the height is pretty high. Again, I don't know how it was set up, whether they had too many guys also on the staging, I don't know. It's hard to say," Fernandes said.

The workers are employed by Gohring's Second Chance Remodeling of Attleboro.

The Occupational Safety and Health Administration says falls are the leading cause of death in the construction industry. The agency recommends employers plan ahead to determine how the job will be done and what safety equipment is needed, including using the right kinds of ladders or scaffolds.

Fernandes said he's not sure he's ever seen an accident of this magnitude. He said he tries to make sure his workers have appropriate safety harnesses and equipment.

"And you feel for the workers that are out there really just trying to make a dollar," he said.

Fernandes said he hopes the workers will recover quickly.