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Building Collapse Kills One, Injures Three Workers At N. Texas High School

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ARGYLE (CBSDFW) - Constructors workers at Argyle High School frantically called 911 after a building under construction suddenly collapsed onto them.

One worker told the dispatcher, "It's bad, it is bad. There's people down, there's people down."

Another employee said, "We're erecting a metal building and it collapsed. We need to get emergency personnel out here immediately."

But the employees quickly realized one of their own was killed. Authorities haven't released his identity.

Three others received minor injuries when the indoor activity center under construction at Argyle High School suddenly collapsed around 7:40 Thursday morning.

Paramedics transported two employees to the hospital but they were released later.

Annabel Thorpe is a broadcast journalism student here who says she interviewed witnesses. "They just said the structure started to wave. The walls, they started moving and it all collapsed, like all sides just caved in and it created a huge noise."
A source says the worker who died was in a bucket on a vehicle when the building came down on it.

The source says another employee quickly dove under another large piece of equipment when heard the framing collapse around him.

OSHA's team of investigators is inspecting what's left to determine why this happened and if any workplace safety regulations were violated.

The agency says the employees work for a subcontractor, Warnick Metal Building Erectors of Haltom City. The company hasn't returned our calls. The general contractor, Northstar Builders of Coppell declined comment.

Argyle ISD's superintendent, Telena Wright, says their police department is also investigating. "My thoughts go out to the family of the deceased. I do not know the identity of the worker yet, and to those workers who were injured. It's a terrible, terrible, terrible tragedy and I am so very sorry."

The district says the building is for athletes, coaches, and the band.

Before it collapsed, the frame stood 50 feet tall and 180 feet long.

The nearly $300,000 project is scheduled to be completed this fall, and there's no word how long construction may be delayed.

Annabel Thorpe says it's been a tough day on campus for administrators and students, including herself.

"It's very difficult knowing that someone died and me having to cover it, but that's part of the job and that's something you have to learn."

Follow Jack on Twitter: @cbs11jack

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