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Cal OSHA Investigates Worker’s Fatal Fall By RICHARD BRENNEMAN

Tuesday January 17, 2006

The state Division of Occupational Safety and Health (Cal/OSHA) has launched an investigation into the fall that claimed the life of a construction worker at the new Berkeley City College Building. 

Robert Walton, a 58-year-old Oakland man, sustained fatal injuries when he fell four stories while working on the new community college building at 2000 Center St. 

Cal/OSHA spokesperson Renee Bacchini said investigators were on the scene of the Jan. 3 accident soon after the accident. 

Walton was rushed to Highland Hospital, where he died a week later on Jan. 10. The Alameda County Coroner’s officer attributed the cause of death to “multiple blunt force injuries.” 

Bacchini said Walton was applying stucco to the surface of the building from a scaffolding at the time of the accident. “He fell from four stories up,” she said. 

Walton was an employee of J&J Acoustics, a San Jose firm. 

Bacchini said investigators will question witnesses, co-workers, and his employer and will examine equipment he was using, whether he had received adequate safety training, any safety equipment or mechanisms he may have been using and whether he was properly equipped with a safety harness. 

“It will be a very comprehensive investigation,” she said. 

While the agency is allowed six months to conclude an investigation, the Cal/OSHA spokesperson said she expected that results would be available in two to three months. 



A memorial service for Walton will be held at 11 a.m. Friday at Fouche’s Hudson Funeral Home, 3665 Telegraph Ave., Oakland.