Weekly Toll: Another group of workers join the list those who didn’t make it through the workday
Posted with permission from Confined Space, a newsletter of workplace safety and labor issues.
Parkland School Teachers Killed in Shooting
Parkland, FL — Three school employees were among the 17 persons killed in the mass shooting at the Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, Florida. Scott Beigel, 35, a geography teacher, was killed as he tried to usher students back into his classroom when the shooting broke out. Aaron Feis, 37, an assistant football coach, was killed when he threw himself in front of students to protect them from oncoming bullets, according to football program spokeswoman Denis Lehtio. Feis, 37, suffered a gunshot wound and died after he was rushed into surgery, Lehtio said. Chris Hixon, 49, was the school’s athletic director.
Worker dies after front end loader plunges into water in Delaware
CLAYMONT, Del. (WPVI) — First responders have recovered the body of a worker (Billy Burns of Claymont) after the front end loader he was operating plunged into the water in Delaware. Crews were dispatched at 10 a.m. Thursday to Oceanport Industries in the 6200 block of Philadelphia Pike. Video from Chopper 6 showed marine and rescue units from Wilmington and New Castle County on the scene, and divers searching the water along a concrete pier near what appeared to be a partially submerged piece of machinery. After a hour-long search, crews recovered the body of the 62-year-old worker. It was not immediately clear what led to the incident. An autopsy on the victim is planned.
Wilmington man identified as worker killed in logging truck crash at Riegelwood plant
RIEGELWOOD, NC (WECT) – Officials with the NC Department of Labor say a worker at International Paper in Riegelwood was killed after his vehicle hit a logging truck early Wednesday morning. According to officials, a preliminary report indicates thatDavid Stephens, 50, of Wilmington, clocked out just before 6 a.m. after pulling a 12-hour shift and was leaving the paper mill when he hit the back of a logging truck on John Riegel Road, went off the roadway and then crashed into a tree. The accident reportedly happened while on company property. Kimberly Clewis, communications manager for International Paper, said Stephens was a 30-year employee at the Riegelwood plant.
Semi truck driver killed in I-80 accident
Salt Lake City, UT — An investigation is underway into the death of semi-truck driver on Interstate 80 in Tooele County. It happened in the westbound lanes near mile marker 72. Utah Highway Patrol sergeant Jared Cornia says the driver had a medical issue which caused the driver to cross the median and crash. The driver died on scene. UHP has not released the name or described what condition the driver was suffering from.
Name released in Friday work-site fatality accident
ENID, Okla. — An Enid Police Department report released to the News & Eagle Saturday identified the victim of a Friday fatal industrial accident as Eriberto Rivas, 52, of San Antonio, Texas. Rivas died Friday after being crushed between two pieces of equipment being loaded onto a trailer at GEFCO Inc., 2215 S. Van Buren. The name of the company affiliated with Rivas is EDS Transport, according to an EPD report. EPD officers Jordan Nichols and Sean Dyer were dispatched to GEFCO at 11:17 a.m. Friday for a report of “a male being smashed between two pieces of equipment,” according to the report. Nichols said in his report he interviewed a GEFCO employee who was loading a street sweeper onto a trailer, where Rivas was standing. “[The employee] stated that when the machine got on flat ground of the trailer it took off and he didn’t have time to react,” Nichols wrote in his report. “[The employee] stated that the machine pinned Eriberto [Rivas] in between the two machines. [The employee] stated that he put the machine in neutral and it then released Eriberto [Rivas].”
Truck Driver Does Not Survive Fall Off Interstate
Newport, TN – A truck driver lost his life this morning when he crashed off of an overpass in Newport, Tennessee. The crash happened just before 8 a.m. According to the Tennessee Highway Patrol, a semi truck hauling auto glass was traveling east on I-40 at mile marker 437 when the driver lost control of his vehicle and crashed off of the interstate, falling dozens of feet onto Golf Course Road below. Cocke County Sheriff Armando Fontes responded to the crash and attempted to revive the truck driver, but his efforts were unsuccessful. The truck driver died at the scene.
Utility Worker Dies After Being Hit by a Stray Bullet From a Shooting a Half Block Away
BERKELEY, Mo. — Police say a St. Louis-area utility worker hit by a stray bullet from a shooting a half block away has died. Berkeley police say 55-year-old Frank Langston, of Dellwood, died Friday. An employee of Raineri Ready Mix, Langston was delivering materials to a St. Louis sewer district project when he was hit by the bullet. He was taken to a hospital and died. Police say the bullet came from a shooting that also killed another man, 27-year-old William Dortch, of St. Ann, about a half block away from where Langston was working. Dortch was inside a car sitting at an intersection when someone began shooting into the car. Berkeley police asked St. Louis County detectives to handle the investigation.
Man killed in Cleveland workplace shooting identified as business owner
CLEVELAND, Ohio — A Cleveland business owner was shot and killed Friday by one of his employees, according to police and the county medical examiner. Donald Vanhorn III, 53, died after the BTU Comfort Solutions employee shot him at the building located on Berea Road near Detroit Avenue, according to the Cuyahoga County Medical Examiner. Vanhorn is the company’s owner and president, according to state business records and the Better Business Bureau. BTU is a heating and cooling installation business. Vanhorn and a 50-year-old man who police described as his employee and friend were inside the building. At some point, Vanhorn pulled out a knife and the employee a gun, police said. Police do not know why both pulled out weapons. RALEIGH COUNTY, WV (WVVA) –
Death reported at Raleigh County coal mine
Raleigh County, WV — The West Virginia Office of Miners’ Health, Safety and Training confirms a worker was killed Wednesday at a Raleigh County mine. The “fatal incident” occurred at 5:45 p.m. at the Pocahontas Coal Company’s Devils Fork 2 highwall mine. According to Samantha Smith, the victim, identified as James A. Whitlock of Smithers, WV died while performing electrical work on a highwall miner. Whitlock worked for Bundy Auger Mining, Inc. as a highwall miner operator. He was 38-years-old. Inspectors with the West Virginia Office of Miners’ Health, Safety and Training have begun their investigation. Whitlock’s death is the second fatal mining incident in West Virginia in 2018.
Electrical Conduit Goes Through Windshield, Kills Truck Driver in Pennsylvania Turnpike Tunnel
Philadelphia, PA — An electrical conduit collapsed onto a tractor-trailer that was traveling through a highway tunnel in Pennsylvania, killing the driver and causing a major traffic closure that lasted into the morning. The big rig was heading southbound through the Lehigh Tunnel of the Northeast Extension of the Pennsylvania Turnpike around 6 p.m. Wednesday when the metal conduit from the ceiling area crashed through the vehicle’s windshield, Lehigh County Coroner Scott Grim said.
ALABAMA OFFICER KILLED, SUSPECT FOUND DEAD AFTER STANDOFF
MOBILE, Ala. (AP) — An hourslong standoff in Alabama ended with both the suspect and a police officer dead. Mobile Police Chief Lawrence Battiste told news outlets early Wednesday that Officer Justin Billa was shot Tuesday night and succumbed to his injuries at a hospital. Earlier Tuesday evening, officers responding to a report of a person hit had found Fonda Poellnitz dead. Police identified her ex-husband, Robert Hollie, as a person of interest and set up a perimeter around his Toulminville home. Battiste said officers called upon him to come out, but Hollie instead opened fire, striking Billa. At least one officer fired shots at the scene.
Federal Regulators Probing Worker’s Death On Gulf Platform
LAKE CHARLES, La. (AP) — Federal regulators are investigating the weekend death of a worker on an oil production platform in the Gulf of Mexico. The contractor was removing out-of-service fire suppression equipment when he was fatally injured on the offshore platform Saturday, according to a statement from Houston-based Talos Production LLC. The platform, about 65 miles (100 miles) south of Lake Charles, is operated by a Talos subsidiary called Energy Resource Technology GOM LLC. The Interior Department’s Bureau of Safety and Environmental Enforcement said in a statement Tuesday that no other workers were injured. It didn’t immediately identify the worker or release additional information. No pollution was reported as a result of the incident, it added.
Wilmington man identified as worker killed in logging truck crash at Riegelwood plant
RIEGELWOOD, NC (WECT) – Officials with the NC Department of Labor say a worker at International Paper in Riegelwood was killed after his vehicle hit a logging truck early Wednesday morning. According to officials, a preliminary report indicates that David Stephens, 50, of Wilmington, clocked out just before 6 a.m. after pulling a 12-hour shift and was leaving the paper mill when he hit the back of a logging truck on John Riegel Road, went off the roadway and then crashed into a tree. The accident reportedly happened while on company property. Kimberly Clewis, communications manager for International Paper, said Stephens was a 30-year employee at the Riegelwood plant. “We are saddened by this tragic event,” Clewis said. “David was a valued and respected member of our team and our thoughts are with his family and friends.”
Funeral arrangements set for Brevard deputy killed in crash
Titusvile, FL- Funeral services for Deputy Kevin Stanton will be at 2 p.m. Friday, Feb. 23, at the New Life Christian Fellowship Church in Titusville. Stanton was killed on duty Saturday on Interstate 95 when a semi truck’s tire lost its treading and wrapped around the axle. The driver then lost control and collided with Stanton’s squad car, according to Florida Highway Patrol. The crash occurred just after 5 a.m. north of State Road 50. Stanton, 32, was a field training officer who worked at the Brevard County Sheriff’s Office for 11 years. Stanton received numerous commendations, commendable service awards, and a Life Saving Award during his time at the Sheriff’s Office.
Brazil man dies following dump truck accident
Terre Haute, IN — A Brazil man died Saturday at an Indianapolis hospital following an industrial accident on Friday. Shawn Chilton, 38, was injured while operating a dump truck at a Misco Industries site at 3600 N. 13th Street, according to an initial report from the Terre Haute Police Department. His employer, ST Construction, announced his death via a post on its Facebook page. “It is with unbearable sorrow that we post of the passing of Shawn Chilton,” the business said. “He had a beautiful soul who brought out the best in all of us. Rest In peace dear friend.”