First Night Boston

Event Contractor Dies During First Night Preparations in Boston

The man died Saturday morning from a workplace incident, the Suffolk DA said

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Preparations for First Night Boston were suspended Saturday after a contractor involved in setting up for the event was killed in a workplace accident in Copley Square.

An adult man died when a 3,500-pound ballast fell from a forklift and crashed onto his chest around 10 a.m. Saturday morning, United Staging & Rigging President Joe Sharpe said in a statement. The worker had been helping to set up a light tower at the time.

While emergency crews arrived quickly, he was pronounced dead on the scene, according to Sharpe.

"The health and safety of our employees is our number one priority," Sharpe said in the statement Saturday evening. "We will respond to the findings when the investigations are complete. Tonight, our focus and prayers are with our employee, his family and co-workers."

United Staging & Rigging also said they are cooperating with Boston Police and OSHA to figure out the cause of the accident.

A preliminary investigation from the Suffolk District Attorney earlier in the day found a workplace incident was responsible for the death.

"My heart goes out to the family and friends of the victim in Copley Square this afternoon," Mayor Marty Walsh said in a statement. "Boston Police are conducting a full investigation into this tragic incident."

A spokesperson for Conventures, Inc., an event planning company for Boston's New Year's Eve celebration, confirmed in a written statement that the death involved one of the event contractors.

"We are deeply saddened by the occurrence and are sending our prayers to the family of the employee," a spokesperson for Conventures, Inc., said in a written statement.

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