MIDTOWN — Sandhog Michael O’Brien’s death while working on a construction project underneath Grand Central Terminal last week was ruled an accident, the medical examiner’s office said on Tuesday.
A spokesman for the office confirmed that O'Brien's death was caused by a falling concrete slab that left O'Brien with fatal blunt-force injuries to his chest. O’Brien’s body has since been moved to Gannon Funeral Home on East 28th Street between Third and Lexington avenues.
A representative from Gannon declined to provide details on the funeral arrangements scheduled for O’Brien because the family has requested that services remain private.
O’Brien, 26 of Westfield, Wis., was killed last Thursday while working alongside his father, Robert, on the East Side Access project, which is meant to expand Grand Central Terminal and connect it to the Long Island Rail Road.
O’Brien’s father reportedly tried to administer CPR before O’Brien was taken to Bellevue Hospital, where he later died.
MTA officials have said the slab that fell on O’Brien was solid shotcrete, a form of concrete that is applied to tunnel walls and ceilings as a viscous liquid and then hardens in place.
In a statement, the MTA expressed condolences over O'Brien's death.
“Everyone associated with the project is heartbroken over the loss of Michael O’Brien,” the statement said. “Our thoughts and prayers are with his family, friends and co-workers.”
The MTA resumed construction on the project on Monday, though it has put shotcrete work on hold.