The operator of the excavator died after the machinery tipped while he was working at a construction site in East Hartford on Wednesday afternoon.

According to the Department of Transportation, the incident happened at a construction site on a bridge on the westbound side of Route 2 near Pitkin Street and the I-84 interchange around 12:30 p.m.

The operator went through the front windshield of excavator and fell off the elevated portion of the highway, firefighters said. He died after being taken to Hartford Hospital.

On Wednesday evening, police identified the operator as 60-year-old John Dubray, of Bethlehem.

State police said the eastbound side of the Founders Bridge was closed for about an hour and a half, but it has since reopened. For real-time traffic updates, check the WFSB traffic page here.

#CTtraffic: I84 eb E Hartford outbound Founder's Bridge closed for backhoe that tipped over w/serious injury. Reduce speed approaching area— CT State Police (@CT_STATE_POLICE) March 22, 2017

Many people, who work in the area, were worried because crews have been jack hammering on the section of highway during the day. But, one eyewitness said he heard one loud bang and then, sirens.

"I was working and I just heard a big boom. And I came outside and I just see this thing flipped over on the side," Bruce Walton, of East Hartford, said. "I believe the guy fell out and they were doing CPR on him and rushed him straight to the hospital. So I don't know if he's alright or not."

Connecticut State Police and the fire marshal's office were looking into what caused the excavator to flip over. Police said they don't believe wind was a factor because it is such a heavy piece of machinery.

Occupational Safety and Health Administration is investigating the incident.

To see pictures of the incident on your mobile device, click here.

Copyright 2017 WFSB (Meredith Corporation). All rights reserved.


Digital Content Producer

Recommended for you