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16-year-old worker killed after new construction homes collapse amid storms, Magnolia officials say

MAGNOLIA, Texas (KTRK) — A 16-year-old died after being trapped under a collapsed structure during severe storms in Magnolia on Tuesday, according to authorities.

According to Cpt. Bryan Perry, the Magnolia Fire Department received a call about a structure collapse at about 1 p.m., which was around the same time that the storm came through with strong winds.

Firefighters responded to a new subdivision of houses being constructed on Willow Heights Lane near FM 1488. Two structures collapsed, and a third was damaged. When crews arrived, they said people at the scene told them someone was stuck inside the rubble.

“After we got there, another part of the building started to collapse. So we had to spend some time shoring up that part of the structure so it didn’t endanger any of the firefighters that were trying to remove the debris,” Perry said.

First responders from multiple agencies, including the Woodlands, Conroe, and North Montgomery County fire departments, spent about three and a half hours trying to get to the victim, but he did not survive, and his body was pulled out of the debris at about 4:15 p.m.

Specialist Caleb Cole with Montgomery County Sheriff’s Office said the victim was a 16-year-old who was working a summer job as one of the construction workers on-site.

He said that several employees were in the structure and noticed it began to shift before evacuating. The victim didn’t make it out and was ultimately trapped.

Christian Hernandez, one of the other construction workers, said he witnessed the collapse from outside.

“We saw houses move really bad, and then we heard cracking noises. We thought, ‘That house is going to fall,'” Hernandez said. “I was scared. I picked up my tools and called my dad because it was like a tornado.”

An investigation is underway to determine if the collapse was caused by the severe storm.

This story comes from our news partner ABC13 Houston.