Weekly Toll: Death in the American workplace
Posted with permission from Confined Space, a newsletter of workplace safety and labor issues.
Worker dies after northeastern Indiana industrial accident
FORT WAYNE, Ind. (AP) — Authorities say a worker has died in an accident at an industrial facility in northeastern Indiana. The Allen County sheriff’s department says the woman got stuck in a machine at Fort Wayne Plastics on Sunday afternoon. The worker’s name wasn’t immediately released. Sheriff’s department spokesman Capt. Steve Stone tells WANE-TV that the woman was freed from the machine at the Fort Wayne facility but was pronounced dead by paramedics.
‘Our Hearts Are Breaking’: Firefighter, Resident Killed in North Philadelphia Blaze
Philadelphia, PA — Philadelphia Fire Commissioner Adam Thiel paused briefly Saturday before delivering the devastating news. Lt. Matthew LeTourneau, an 11-year veteran of the department, had died in the line of duty at the age of 42. Lt. LeTourneau was one of 100 firefighters who responded to a two-alarm rowhome fire on the 2200 block of North Colorado Street, a side street off West Susquehanna Avenue near 17th Street in North Philly, at 8:51 a.m. Saturday. The responding firefighters removed a resident from the home. That resident, who has not yet been identified, was later pronounced dead. During the fire, a structure inside the home collapsed while Lt. LeTourneau was inside, trapping him underneath debris. His colleagues tried desperately to get him out.
Cashier shot dead by estranged husband at west valley store
Las Vegas, NV — A cashier working in a west valley convenience store was shot and killed Saturday night by her estranged husband who then turned the gun on himself, according to Metro Police. The man, who shot himself in the head, was rushed to University Medical Center in critical condition, said Metro Lt. Dan McGrath. He called the shooting “very disturbing” and “a very unfortunate domestic violence incident.” “Domestic violence is something that as difficult as it is, it needs to be discussed and we need to bring it up and talk about it…there are always other options,” he said. The man, who is in his late 50s, walked into Herbst Market on Desert Inn and Fort Apache roads, went around the counter and shot the woman multiple times, McGrath said. Video surveillance shows that there apparently was no confrontation before gunfire erupted, he added.
Investigation launched at Holland plant following worker’s death
HOLLAND, Mich. — The Michigan Occupational Safety & Health Administration (MiOSHA) is investigating a workplace accident December 22nd at Challenge Manufacturing that allegedly led to an employee’s death. That’s been confirmed by a spokesperson for the state Department of Licensing & Regulatory Affairs. It happened that evening at the manufacturing plant at 1401 S. Washington Avenue, according to dispatchers. Scott Tuesink, 56, died seven days later at the Fred & Lena Meijer Heart Center in Grand Rapids. Reportedly, Tuesink was struck by a steel coil, before being taken to Spectrum Health Butterworth Hospital for treatment.
Massachusetts state worker dies after storm
Arlington, MA — Police say an employee of the Massachusetts Water Resources Authority died while cleaning up after the winter storm that dumped more than a foot of snow on parts of the state. Arlington police tell WFXT-TV that the employee, who they did not publicly identify, went into cardiac arrest and was found in a snowbank at a facility for the water authority early Friday. The employee was taken to Mount Auburn Hospital, and was pronounced dead.
Truck driver dies after crashing off of Virginia highway into house
Galax, VA — A truck driver lost his life this morning when he left the roadway and crashed into an unoccupied house near Galax, Virginia. The crash happened around 10 a.m. According to Virginia State Police, truck driver Johnathan D. Harding, 40, was traveling westbound on Route 58 when he left the roadway and struck a home two miles east of Galax, causing severe structural damage.
Worker Dies in Forklift Accident at Marine Terminal
San Diego, CA — A longshore worker was killed in a forklift accident at the Tenth Avenue Marine Terminal in Barrio Logan Wednesday, the Port of San Diego confirmed. Rescue crews responded to reports of the accident in the 1700 block of Water Street just before 3:30 p.m., San Diego Fire-Rescue Department (SDFD) said. The longshore worker died, Port of San Diego spokesperson Marguerite Elicone said. The individual’s identity has not yet been released. The accident occurred near the Tenth Avenue Marine Terminal.
Gavilon Grain employees killed in elevator identified
Wichita, KS — Sedgwick County officials have released the names of the two Gavilon Grain employees killed in a grain elevator accident Tuesday southwest of Wichita. The Regional Forensic Science Center has identified Joshua Rasbold, 28, and Marcus Tice, 32, from the incident. The men were buried under 20 to 25 feet of grain in a concrete grain elevator and were not recovered by emergency responders for nearly two hours. The Occupational Safety and Health Administration is investigating. The owner of the elevator, formerly known as DeBruce Grain, has faced 24 cases of safety and health violations by federal regulators over the past seven years.
Hampton man dead after struck by front-end loader
HAMPTON, VA (WWBT) – A 75-year-old man died in Thursday’s storm in Hampton after he was struck and killed by a front-end loader, according to NBC affiliate WAVY. His death is being classified as a “work-related industrial accident.” The man was identified as Barry Hale, a private contractor working to clear parking lots. Police say at some point while removing the snow, the front-end loader hit Hale, WAVY reported. He was transported to the hospital, where he later died.
Jersey City police officer struck, killed on Turnpike
Jersey City, NJ — A Jersey City police lieutenant on the job for 23 years was killed on the New Jersey Turnpike early this morning. Christopher Robateau, 49, of Carteret, exited his car to help a motorist on his way to work this morning and was struck by a vehicle, according to Mayor Steve Fulop. The incident happened just after 6:30 a.m. near mile marker 104, city spokeswoman Kim Scalcione said. That would place the incident near Exit 14.
Kansas Firefighter Dies from Fall Injuries
WAMEGO, Kan. (KSNT) – A Wamego firefighter has died after suffering serious injuries from a fall. According to the Wamego Fire Department, John Randle and the Wamego Fire Department responded to a structure fire at 4:50 a.m. on Monday. After the fire was put out, he was severely hurt from a fall from a fire truck while “returning a fire apparatus to service.”
Worker killed in industrial accident
CLEVELAND, Tenn. — A man was killed in an industrial accident Monday afternoon at Waste Connections in Cleveland, Tenn., according to the Cleveland Police Department. Waste Connections is a garbage collection service. The department’s spokeswoman, Sgt. Evie West, said an employee found co-worker Raymond McCann, 28, unresponsive at the facility on Industrial Drive. West said the investigation is ongoing but the death has been ruled an industrial accident.
Procession honors Wisconsin Rapids firefighter
WISCONSIN RAPIDS, WI – Friends, family and colleagues came together Friday to honor a man who helped protect the community for 23 years. James M. Easton, 46, who was a firefighter and paramedic with the Wisconsin Rapids Fire Department died New Year’s Day after an accidental fall. His funeral was Friday morning at Crossview Church in Wisconsin Rapids. Afterwards, firefighters and police held a procession through part of the city in honor of Easton.
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