FORT WORTH (CBS 11 NEWS) – When a building collapses and there’s loss of life or property, the I-Team looks through federal, state and even county information to build a history for each company involved.
In this case, the general contractor, or boss in charge of this project, is Northstar Builders out of Coppell. The company has only been around since 2012, but its three owners, Bruce Helm, Aaron Scates, and Wade Decker, have been in the construction business for decades. Northstar Builders focuses on school-type construction projects and has no issues so far with OSHA.
Underneath Northstar are two subcontractors that do a lot of the heavy lifting initially, Warnick Metal Building Erectors and Leland Collier Electric.
Leland Collier Electric has been around for more than 50 years and does a lot of electrical work for big education projects. OSHA records show they’ve been cited five times since 2005 by OSHA and they had a death on the job in September 2007. OSHA records show a worker installing a light fixture was electrocuted and fell off a ladder. The company was fined $11,400.
The man who died today in the Argyle building collapse was an employee of Warnick Metal Building Erectors. Their OSHA records only show one violation since 2010.
But court documents the CBS 11 I-Team uncovered show the company was sued in 2007 after a building they put together collapsed. It happened in northeast Fort Worth off Riverbend Road. The owners that filed the suit said an investigation showed Warnick did not properly weld the building. They also claimed Warnick did not follow design and construction plans, making their building more susceptible to damage when a major storm hit Fort Worth in 2007.
That case was eventually settled out of court for an undisclosed amount of money.
We reached out to all of the companies involved today, but no one returned our calls.
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