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Worker killed at Henderson quarry was caught in rock-crushing machine

Updated February 10, 2021 - 7:29 pm

The man who died from injuries sustained at a Henderson rock quarry last week was wounded by a rock-crushing machine, the city’s fire chief said Wednesday.

Harry Kenneth Peterson III died Friday at Sunrise Hospital and Medical Center, according to the Clark County coroner’s office. His death was ruled an accident.

Henderson Fire Department Chief Shawn White said crews that went to the job site near Horizon Ridge Parkway and Viento Puntero Drive were informed that a worker, later identified as Peterson, was helping others move a rock-crushing machine to another area of the work site.

Part of the machine had apparently jammed and Peterson was trying to fix it when he got caught in the equipment, White said. It was not clear to rescue crews how or where he got stuck, he said.

“Whatever happened, he had massive head and chest injuries,” White said.

When fire crews arrived, he had already been removed from the machine, he said.

“He was breathing when we got there, so our crews rapidly transported him to Sunrise trauma, where he later succumbed to those injuries,” White said.

Whenever a death occurs on a work site, the Fire Department contacts job safety officials.

The Nevada Occupational Safety and Health Administration is investigating the fatality, the agency said this week. Teri Williams, spokeswoman for the agency, described the job site as a rock quarry and said the man’s employer was Las Vegas Paving Corp.

James Barker, general counsel for the company, declined to comment out of respect for the family and due to the ongoing OSHA investigation.

A Henderson police report released Wednesday morning contained no details about the incident, except to say it did not appear to be the result of a criminal act and that OSHA took over the investigation. The report identified Peterson as Kenneth Peterson.

Henderson has declined to provide reports associated with the Fire Department’s response, citing patient privacy.

This is not the first time safety officials have investigated a death at a Las Vegas Paving Corp. job site.

In February 2009, 25-year-old Byron Souza died while working on the Terminal 3 roadway project at McCarran International Airport for the company. The incident involved a compact motorized earth-moving shovel.

Souza died of blunt force trauma to the head. His death was ruled an accident.

The outcome of OSHA’s investigation was not clear Wednesday afternoon.

Contact Blake Apgar at bapgar@reviewjournal.com or 702-387-5298. Follow @blakeapgar on Twitter.

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