PORTLAND, Ore. (KOIN) — A 19-year-old man died and two 18-year-old women were hurt when a masonry column collapsed at Lewis & Clark College in Portland Monday night.
The column collapsed around 8:15 p.m. in a spot that was centrally located on campus, PFR officials said. There were 6 students in 3 hammocks that were attached to the columns when one collapsed inward onto them. No one was pinned underneath the column but 3 of the 6 were hurt.
Campus security helped emergency responders get personnel and equipment to the scene. An AMR crew arrived first and confirmed the death of the 19-year-old.
The two young women were taken to an area hospital for treatment of their injuries. One suffered an arm injury, the other an abdominal injury. Their exact conditions are not known at this time.
The names of those involved have not yet been released.
“We are devastated to report that earlier this evening, a tragic accident occurred on the undergraduate campus in which one of our students was killed and two others were injured,” Lewis & Clark said in a statement released overnight. “We are working to contact the students’ families and will report more information as it becomes available. We are deeply saddened by the shocking loss of a member of our community.”
Monday was the first day of classes at Lewis & Clark.
School president Robin Holmes-Sullivan released a statement on the tragic incident on Tuesday.
“A tragic accident occurred on our campus last night. A few students attached hammocks to free-standing columns that are part of the historic grape arbor in the lower estate garden on the undergraduate campus. One of the columns fell inward, causing serious injuries to three students. Two of these students were transported to the hospital and are recovering. However, despite efforts to provide emergency aid, the third student did not survive. The family has requested privacy during this time. This includes not releasing his name.
I am a parent myself and I, along with the entire Lewis & Clark community, are devastated by this loss. My heart goes out to his family and friends. We will do everything we can to support our students recovering in the hospital and those on campus who have been impacted by this tragedy.
Space has been made available in the Flanagan Chapel for anyone seeking quiet reflection. We will let the campus know if and when memorial services are planned.
Grief counselors have also been working with students, faculty and staff impacted by this incident and will continue to be available. Employees can get help by emailing email@example.com. Students can email firstname.lastname@example.org for assistance with counseling. The dean of the College of Arts and Sciences has also asked professors to be flexible regarding missed classes.“
KOIN 6 News will continue to follow this story.