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Billboard Collapses Kills 2 in Ga.

August 1, 2002

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SNELLVILLE, Ga. (AP) _ A 35,000-pound billboard collapsed at a suburban Atlanta shopping center Thursday, killing two construction workers and leaving another trapped beneath an enormous pile of mangled steel.

A fourth worker was trapped briefly but was freed. He was flown to a hospital; his condition was not immediately known.

``We heard this big crash, so we looked over and we saw this huge sign just fall,″ witness Truly Scott told WAGA-TV. ``There was blood everywhere. It was awful to see.″

The billboard, roughly 30 by 60 feet, was under construction when it collapsed just before noon at the shopping center. It crashed onto the side of a one-story building below.

Crews used cranes to remove debris and get to the trapped worker. It was unclear whether he was alive.

``They’re just worried about how stable that structure is,″ Snellville police spokesman Tim Colgan said.

The billboard was designed to switch among three advertisements using rotating boards. Structural work on the billboard was complete, and the crew was doing electrical work, Gwinnett County fire Lt. David Dusik said.

Dusik said authorities did not yet know why the structure collapsed.

The billboard crashed onto a building housing an interior design firm. Colgan it did not appear anyone inside the building was hurt.

Snellville is about 20 miles east of Atlanta.

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