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5 roofers injured when scaffolding collapses at East Deer work site

| Monday, June 16, 2014, 10:33 a.m.
Jason Bridge | Valley News Dispatch
Emergency personnel investigate the scene at Weleski Transfer in East Deer after multiple victims fell from scaffolding on Monday, June 16, 2014.
Jason Bridge | Valley News Dispatch
Emergency personnel transfer one of the victims to an awaiting STAT MedEvac helicopter at East Deer Recreational Facility after five roofers fell from scaffolding at Weleski Transfer in East Deer on Monday, June 16, 2014.
Jason Bridge | Valley News Dispatch
Emergency personnel work the scene at Weleski Transfer in East Deer after five roofers fell from scaffolding on Monday, June 16, 2014.

Five roofers who fell during an apparent scaffolding collapse on Monday morning at Weleski Transfer's facility in East Deer didn't sustain life-threatening injuries, according to company officials.

However, two workers were flown to Pittsburgh hospitals by emergency medical helicopters, and a third man was taken via ambulance to an area hospital.

At least one other was treated at a Pittsburgh hospital and released later Monday, and officials said one worker declined treatment.

The men were on scaffolding at Weleski's warehouse at 500 Treadway Lane in East Deer, across the railroad tracks from the rear of the P.J. Greco Sons Inc. Inc. scrap yard that fronts Freeport Road.

Weleski Vice President Lynn Thompson said the workers were replacing the roof when a portion of the scaffolding collapsed around 9:30 a.m. and they fell about 20 feet.

The workers were from J&J Roofing of Vandergrift, according to Thompson.

One of the men treated and released was Jason Fish, who owns J&J Roofing in Vandergrift, according to a J&J manager who declined to identify herself.

“It was a freak accident,” she said. “It shouldn't have happened.”

She declined to release the names of the workers or the hospitals that were treating the men.

Multiple ambulances were dispatched to the scene and two medical helicopters each airlifted a patient from the East Deer Recreational Facility in Creighton.

The federal Occupational Safety and Health Administration is investigating the accident, according to Chris Robinson, area director for the Pittsburgh OSHA office.

“Initially, we will look at the cause of the incident and if there are deficiencies,” Robinson said.

An investigation can take several months, he said.

Mary Ann Thomas is a staff writer for Trib Total Media. She can be reached at 724-226-4691 or mthomas@tribweb.com. Staff writer Emily Balser contributed.

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