Published: Mar 14, 2011 4:49 PM EDT
Updated: Mar 14, 2011 1:49 PM EDT

CAPE CANAVERAL, Fla.- A space shuttle worker has fallen to his death at the launch pad.

Officials at NASA's Kennedy Space Center say the accident occurred at 7:40 a.m. Monday. The man fell while working. Medics rushed to the pad, but were unable to revive him.

Details of what happened are not yet available.

NASA spokesman Allard Beutel says work on space shuttle Endeavour was suspended for the day. Beutel says the focus is offering grief counseling to the work force. Endeavour is due to blast off April 19 on its final flight. The shuttle arrived at the pad last week.

The victim worked for United Space Alliance, a NASA contractor. His identity is being withheld.

Officials believe it's the first launch pad fatality in decades.

--- Online: NASA: http://www.nasa.gov/shuttle (Copyright 2011 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)