Worker dies in reported cave-in

at Imlay City condominium site IMLAY CITY — An investigation continues into the tragic death of a 38-year-old worker at a construction site in Imlay City Thursday afternoon, Sept. 12.
Imlay City Fire Chief Rick Horton said firefighters were dispatched at around 12:56 p.m. to a reported “trench cave-in and entrapment” at a construction site on William Imlay Drive, east of Stoldt Drive within the Imlay Place Condominium complex.
The complex is located off the west side of Almont Ave., north of Newark Rd.
Horton reported that firefighters were joined at the scene by Imlay City Police officers and DPW workers, along with Lapeer County EMS.
Horton said responding crews initiated hand-digging to extricate the victim from the collapsed trench.
Among those assisting in the recovery effort were Imlay City Police Officers Joe DeLuca and Corey Martin.
Upon extrication, the victim was pronounced deceased by a Lapeer County Medical Examiner called to the scene.
Horton said recovery of the victim was complicated by “the depth of the trench and the narrow work environment.”
Horton added that once the trench had been opened up and possibility of a subsequent cave-in removed, emergency crews were allowed to proceed with the recovery of the victim.
The victim was transported to McLaren Lapeer Region Hospital by Lapeer County EMS personnel.
While cause of death has yet to be determined, Imlay City Police Chief Scott Pike reported that the victim had sustained a severe head trauma.
Pike said representatives from the Michigan Occupational Safety and Health Association (MIOSHA) were investigating the incident.
Lapeer County Sheriff’s Lt. Gary Parks said on Friday that an autopsy of the victim would likely not take place before the weekend.
The name of the victim was initially being withheld pending the results of the ongoing investigation.
However, several local media sources identified the victim as Craig Wagner, 38, of Dryden.
Chief Horton added that one of his firefighters sustained minor injuries and was treated and released.

Tom Wearing started at the Tri-City Times in 1989, covering the Village of Capac as a beat reporter. He later served stints as assistant editor and editor. Today, he covers Imlay City and Almont as a staff writer. He enjoys music and plays drums and sings with various musical groups in the Detroit Metropolitan area.