A maintenance worker was killed at a TradeWinds Island Resorts property Wednesday morning when an elevator dropped and crushed him, the Pinellas County Sheriff's Office said.
The accident happened just before 10:30 a.m. at the Jacaranda Beach Villas, which are resort condominiums at the TradeWinds.
Mark Allen Johnson, 45, was performing routine maintenance with a co-worker on the ground floor of the south elevator facing the beach when authorities said it appears as though the elevator dropped on top of him.
The second worker was not injured.
Deputies said Johnson's coworker called 911 from the resort, where the pair had been doing routine maintenance. Investigators said Johnson was cleaning oil from inside the elevator shaft when the elevator fell on top of him.
"The maintenance crew at the TradeWinds had locked the elevator at the second level and it fell after they had been working for about 40 minutes," said Cristen Rensel with the Pinellas County Sheriff's Office.
Past inspection reports show the same elevator had previous issues with a light and various buttons last year, but those problems were corrected. The most recent inspection was performed just two days ago.
"There was no negative marks on the inspection, everything passed but the inspector did denote there was some water in the basin," TradeWinds president Keith Overton said. "That happens when the ground water rises from time to time. That's what Mr. Johnson, with his company SWS, doing there today was mitigating that water."
Johnson's employer, SWS Environmental Services, said they are still looking into all the details about his death.
TradeWinds officials released a statement a short while after Johnson's death.
"A subcontractor was fatally injured while performing routine maintenance on one of the elevators at the Island Grand," the TradeWinds said in a released statement.
"Emergency personnel responded immediately and no guests or employees were injured or at risk of injury during the incident. We are working with authorities to get more details and will provide updates as appropriate."
Sheriff's deputies are investigating the incident as an accidental death.
Johnson's family members said they are devastated by his death.
"He's definitely going to be missed," cousin Brad Iturriaga said. "We have a huge family."
Iturriaga said his cousin left behind two young sons.