A contractor was killed when a chimney stack of the house he was working on in Doncaster collapsed on top of him, police said.
Neighbours said the home owner tried frantically to rescue the worker from the rubble, but he could not be saved.
Police, fire and ambulance crews were called to the incident on Beech Road, Campsall, on Saturday, at about 11am.
Yorkshire Ambulance Service sent two ambulances, an air ambulance, two rapid response vehicles and a hazardous area response team.
However, the 33-year-old man could not be saved and he was declared dead at the scene.
Neighbour Aide Naylor, who lives in Vaughan Road, adjoining Beech Road, said: “I heard a thud inside, after I had just come back from an all-night fishing trip.
“He was putting a log burner in, but he didn’t have anything above him.
“The person who owns the house was in the Army, and he dragged him out of the rubble.”
Another neighbour, who declined to be named, said: “I was shocked. It’s just a tragic accident.”
A spokesman for South Yorkshire Police said: “Police were called at about 10.55am on Saturday to reports a man had been injured by a collapsed chimney stack.
“The man was pronounced dead at the scene and the structure was made safe.”
South Yorkshire Police said the man had not yet been formally identified, but said the circumstances of the death were not thought to be suspicious.
One person was also taken to Doncaster Royal Infirmary suffering with shock, but no-one else was thought to be seriously hurt.