CHENNAI: A 50-year-old labourer of a private firm engaged in underground drainage pipeline work died after earth caved in at the site in Otteri on Friday.
Police sources said Kuppusamy and his co-worker Marimuthu (45) dug a trench on Bristley Road as part of the work to renovate drainage pipelines which has been going on for the past one-and-a-half months in Otteri and its adjoining areas.
Around 2 pm, when Kuppusamy was standing inside the eight-feet deep pit along with Marimuthu, a mound of earth caved in, burying the two inside the pit.
As Marimuthu raised an alarm, other workers came to their rescue and pulled him out. They also tried to rescue Kuppusamy who was buried neck-deep in the silt, but more earth caved in, burying him.
They could pull out only the lifeless body of Kuppusamy. It was taken to Kilpauk Medical College Hospital for autopsy.
Preliminary probe showed that the contractor did not have safety measures in place for the workers and no iron plates were installed to hold the sand. Kuppusamy had joined the private company six months ago and earned Rs 450 a day when there was work. He was the sole breadwinner of his family.
Marimuthu is being treated at Government Stanley Hospital, where his condition is said to be stable. Otteri police registered a case.