By David Madden and Robin Rieger
ATLANTIC CITY, N.J. (CBS) –– A wrongful death lawsuit has been filed as a result of last September’s fatal lightning strike at the construction site of the Revel Casino Resort, in Atlantic City.
Bryan Bradley was working with a crane crew to move concrete when the storm blew in. Managers handed out rain gear but kept the work going, according to attorney Paul D’Amato, until a bolt of lightning hit the crane, killing Bradley, 40, and injuring two others (see previous story).
“My husband was a brother and he was a son and he was a father “, said Carmen Bradley, who choked back tears as she talked about her husband Bryan Bradley’s death.
She and two workers injured in the strike are suing network construction of Pleasantville and Tishman construction, builders of the casino, contending weather should have stopped the work.
“The actions of the safety persons or lack thereof were completely negligent”, said Bradley
“Instead of getting us to safety, they offered us rain jackets”, said Forman Joe Forcinito.
Forcinito, Dennis Lamond and Bradley, all wet from rain, were at the base of an 800-foot tower crane that was bringing up concrete in metal buckets. Bradley had a bucket in his hands.
“There were over one thousand lightning strike strikes in our immediate area before the final lightning strike that hit the tower crane,” D’Amato (right) said today.
The lawsuit seeks damages for Bradley’s widow and the two injured workers.
“It wasn’t a direct (order) ‘You guys keep working,’ it was the buckets kept coming, kept coming,” said Dennis Lamond, who says he feels the pain of the lightning strike everyday.
OSHA cited network construction in November indicating 30 minutes before the strike the national weather service warned of strong thunderstorms in the area. OSHA says network construction is contesting the citation.
The company released a statement that reads in part
“Whenever there is an accident, human nature says there has to be someone at fault, but not in this case. It was an Act of Nature, a freak accident.”
In a statement, Tishman responded:
“We were not cited or found to be at fault by any entity investigating the incident last year, including OSHA.”
D’Amato says Revel has not been named because of a lack of evidence.
He says the lawsuits are seeking unspecified damages and answers for the companies named. He says Bradley’s boys and wife deserve to know what happened that day, what supervisors did or didn’t do. D’Amato says he would like to know if other construction jobs in the area stopped working that day because of the storm.
Attorneys for the other defendants were not immediately available for comment.