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Northwest News Network

Washington Announces Fines In Bridge Demolition That Killed Couple, Infant Son

The state of Washington has issued workplace safety fines in a bridge demolition accident that killed a couple and their infant son. The fines announced Monday target four construction contractors.

On April 14, workers were building a pedestrian walkway on a highway overpass in Bonney Lake southeast of Tacoma. Suddenly a concrete barrier fell onto the road below crushing a vehicle passing underneath. Killed were Josh and Vanessa Ellis and their eight-month-old son Hudson.

Washington’s Department of Labor and Industries has now cited and fined the four contractors involved for workplace safety hazards. The biggest fine was issued to Eugene, Oregon-based Staton Companies -- nearly $60,000.

One of the findings of the investigation is that Staton allowed work to continue despite concerns about the barrier falling down during demolition. A lawyer for the company did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

All four companies have 15 days to appeal.

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Correction: An earlier version of this story identified Josh Ellis as John Ellis.

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