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Falling tape measure kills construction worker in N.J.

JERSEY CITY, N.J. - A man delivering sheet rock to a construction site was killed Monday when a tape measure fell 50 stories and hit him on the head, authorities said.

A spokeswoman for Jersey City's department of public safety said the accident occurred shortly before 9 a.m. in the city's downtown area.

The 1-pound tape measure became dislodged from the belt of a worker on the 50th floor and struck construction equipment about 10 to 15 feet from the ground, spokeswoman Carly Baldwin said. It then ricocheted and struck 58-year-old Gary Anderson, who had just stopped to speak with another worker who was in a pickup truck.

Anderson, of Somerdale in southern New Jersey, was taken to a hospital, where he died shortly before 10 a.m.

Anderson wasn't wearing a hard hat but had one in his truck at the time, according to the police report.

A police report listed Anderson as working for Charlotte, North Carolina-based National Gypsum. A spokeswoman for the company said he was delivering National Gypsum's product at the time of the accident but was employed by an independent trucking company.

Officials said two 50-story residential towers and an attached hotel are being built at the site of the accident.

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