Local News

Contractor missing after fall from Outer Banks bridge

Posted April 27, 2010 11:59 a.m. EDT
Updated April 27, 2010 12:41 p.m. EDT

— The U.S. Coast Guard and Dare County authorities were searching Tuesday morning for a worker who fell off the Manns Harbor Bridge into Croatan Sound, officials said.

Sydney Valesco was doing maintenance work on the bridge for VHP Enterprises Inc., of Tarpon Springs, Fla., which was hired by the state Department of Transportation for the project. The bridge carries U.S. Highway 64 Business across the sound to Manteo and Roanoke Island.

Valesco fell about 15 to 20 feet from the middle of the bridge into the water at about 8 a.m. He wasn't wearing any safety gear, so another worker jumped in to assist him but was unable to do so, officials said.

Emergency personnel pulled the second worker from the water, and he suffered no injuries, officials said.

A rescue boat from the Coast Guard's Oregon Inlet station and a rescue helicopter from Elizabeth City joined three Dare County boat crews in the search. A dive team from the Dare County Fire Department also responded to the search.