Worker falls down 40-foot hole at border wall prototype construction site

SAN DIEGO -- A laborer fell into a 40-foot-deep hole but emerged largely unscathed Wednesday at the newly activated Otay Mesa construction site where prototypes for a new national border wall are being built.

The accident at the fenced-off federal work zone just north of the U.S.- Mexico line occurred about 9:45 a.m., said Carlos Diaz, southwest branch chief for U.S. Customs and Border Protection.

After being hoisted out of the chasm -- a shaft for a concrete footing -- by fellow crew members, the victim was able to return to his duties immediately, Diaz said.

Construction at the work site about a mile and a half east of the southern terminus of state Route 905 began Tuesday morning. Eight demo versions of President Donald Trump's proposed barrier along the southern U.S. border are slated to be erected there over the next 30 days or so, according to federal officials.