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Column collapse at Lewis & Clark College kills student, injures 2 others

Caution tape surrounds the area around Lewis & Clark College’s swimming pool on Aug. 30, 2022. One student died and two were injured Monday night when a free-standing column collapsed. Investigators learned that several hammocks were attached to the column when it collapsed.
Meerah Powell
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Caution tape surrounds the area around Lewis & Clark College’s swimming pool on Aug. 30, 2022. One student died and two were injured Monday night when a free-standing column collapsed. Investigators learned that several hammocks were attached to the column when it collapsed.

One student died and two others were hurt when a brick column collapsed at Lewis & Clark College in Southwest Portland Monday night.

Portland Fire & Rescue said witnesses confirmed there were six people in three hammocks attached to several free-standing columns when one of the columns fell inward. It happened around 8 p.m.

At the scene, no one was pinned beneath the column but there were multiple injuries, according to PF&R. One person, a 19-year-old male student, was seriously hurt and bystanders performed CPR.

The man died by the time ambulance crews arrived. Two 18-year-old women were injured and taken to a nearby hospital.

The school released the following statement after the death:

Monday was the first day of the college’s new school year.

On Tuesday morning, caution tape surrounded the region around Lewis & Clark’s outdoor swimming pool where the brick column collapsed.

Much of the area near where the column had collapsed was relatively quiet, with a few students sitting in the nearby Estate Gardens, just west of the swimming pool, working on laptops and writing in notebooks.

In other parts of campus, college activities continued on the second day of the fall semester, with some classes doing icebreaker activities outside and others appearing already deep into lectures inside campus buildings.

Copyright 2022 Oregon Public Broadcasting. To see more, visit Oregon Public Broadcasting.