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Relatives Mourn Mexican Worker's Death at West Village Construction Site

By Valeria Ricciulli | April 22, 2016 6:37pm | Updated on April 24, 2016 7:25pm
 Luis Mata, originally from Mexico, died on Thursday after been struck by a plank while at work in a West Village building.
Luis Mata, originally from Mexico, died on Thursday after been struck by a plank while at work in a West Village building.
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MANHATTAN — The family of Luis Mata, 32, the worker who was fatally struck by a plank at 421 Hudson St. on Thursday, is still trying to process his death, according to his childhood friend. 

"We are really confused, we don't know what happened," said Edgar Garcia, 30. "No one has given me an explanation."

Police believe the wooden plank fell on Mata at the Hudson Street site, which the Department of Buildings said is home to The Printing House luxury condo development. When officers arrived at the scene just after 5 p.m., they found him unconscious "with severe neck and back injuries."

Mata was later pronounced dead at Lenox Hill Healthplex, police said.

In a statement, the DOB said the construction accident happened while scaffolding was been dismantled at The Printing House. It added that Mata was wearing a “hard hat” when he was struck.

A spokesman from the DOB also said that violations have been issued in the past, as well as a “stop work order” for the site’s scaffolding.

Mata, who was originally from Jiquilpan, Mexico, lived with his uncle in Port Chester and had arrived to the United States eight or nine years ago, according to Garcia.

"He had previously worked as a gardener and I got him the job in scaffolding," Garcia said. "I've known him since we were little kids."

Mata’s funeral will be held this weekend, Garcia said, but details were not immediately available.