Garage collapse at Boston demo site is fatal

Garage collapse at Boston demo site is fatal

Fatal incident involves a five-year project to dismantle a multistory parking garage.

March 29, 2022

The partial collapse of a parking garage being dismantled in Boston has led to another death in the North American demolition sector.

JDC Demolition, based in Boston, released the following statement March 27: “We at JDC Demolition are deeply saddened by the tragic incident that occurred on Saturday at the Government Center Garage project. There are no words that appropriately describe the loss of Peter Monsini, our JDC Demolition teammate. Our thoughts, prayers and condolences are with Peter and his family. We ask that you please respect the privacy of Peter's family and colleagues during this difficult time.”

The incident, which took place the previous day, has been described by the Engineering News-Record (ENR), as occurring at a multistory Massachusetts Bay Transportation Authority (MBTA) parking structure that was being dismantled to make way for a “planned life-sciences complex.”

The 51-year-old Monsini was a member of the International Union of Operating Engineers (IUOE), with Local 4 in Medway, Massachusetts. That union local’s business manager, Bill McLaughlin, put out a statement reading in part, “We were devastated to learn that we lost a brother member from Local 4 to a tragic and horrible construction accident in Boston. He was a great friend to many of us and he will be sadly missed. We have formally expressed our thanks to the first responders and city officials who arrived on the scene – and we are working with them to support their investigation and all efforts to understand exactly what occurred.”

A report from the Boston Globe quotes a police officer who witnessed the structural collapse as describing “a major collapse involving an occupied mini demolition excavator.” The same officer says the compact excavator, along with “large slabs” of concrete, fell approximately 100 feet.

ENR says an investigation will include reviewing the plans of the developer and contractors involved in the project to stabilize the remaining portions of the garage.

The developer, Boston-based HYM Investment Group and National Real Estate Advisors says it is fully cooperating in that investigation, according to ENR.

That publication also characterizes the project as the “longest running demolition project in Boston history,” having started in 2017 and being on track for completion later this year.

That same publication released a report earlier this year tracking and commenting upon the role of structural collapses in the safety record of the demolition sector.