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Man fell six floors in fatal East Boston construction accident, federal agency says

Police tape blocked off the scene of a death at a construction site in East Boston.David L. Ryan/Globe Staff

An employee of a Woburn iron works company was fatally injured Wednesday when he fell six stories down a stairwell shaft in an apartment building under construction in East Boston, officials said Thursday.

The man’s identity was not released and the circumstances of t remain under investigation by Boston police, Suffolk District Attorney Rachael Rollins’ office and the federal Occupational Safety and Health Administration.

According to OSHA, the man was an employee of Evolution Iron Works of Woburn, which is working as a subcontractor for New England Construction at the Grace Apartments project on Sumner Street.

In an e-mail to the Globe Thursday, an OSHA spokesman wrote that the “deceased worker fell approximately 6 floors down a stairwell shaft.”


Boston police were initially called to the site about 11:19 a.m. at 187 Sumner St. on Wednesday to investigate a report of a worker who had fallen, police said.

The man was pronounced dead at the scene, said Boston Police Superintendent Gerard Bailey said.

OSHA continues to investigate the specific incident but is also looking into the two companies, the spokesman said. According to an online OSHA database, Evolution Iron Works does not have a history of workplace safety violations.

Evolution Iron Works did not immediately respond to a telephone call and an e-mail Thursday.

The Globe has asked to clarify information about New England Construction as there are firms with similar names.

OSHA allowed the construction project to resume.

Documents posted on the building at the scene said the project is called Grace Apartments, an affordable property for seniors.

BPDA plans say the building is to be a seven-story addition to Heritage Apartments, an existing housing project at 209 Sumner St. which is made up of 17 units for elderly and disabled people.

The project was approved by the BPDA at the beginning of 2020, according to the agency’s website, and is being developed by the East Boston Community Development Corporation. Officials at the corporation could not be reached for comment. A BPDA spokeswoman deferred comment to Boston police.


Due to a reporting error, an earlier version of this story misstated the ownership of the property at 187 Summer St.

John R. Ellement can be reached at Follow him @JREbosglobe. Andrew Brinker can be reached at Follow him @andrewnbrinker.