Weekly Toll: Nothing new on the workplace death front
Posted with permission from Confined Space, a newsletter of workplace safety and labor issues.
Salisbury Chemical Plant Employee Dies After Falling Into Open Tank
Salisbury, NC — The employee who died in a workplace accident Saturday morning at a chemical plant in North Carolina has been identified, according to WSOC. The victim, identified as 43-year-old Clint Miller, fell 10 feet into an open tank at about 4 a.m. during a loading operation while working at AkzoNobel in Salisbury. “He mixed compounds. He mixed chemicals,” said Clint’s mother, Sandy Miller.
Pace construction worker dies from fall off truck
Man dies after tree falls on him, trapping him in machine
Independence, MI — A 36-year-old Waterford man died Friday when a tree fell and trapped him in a walk-behind skid steer, according to the Oakland County Sheriff’s Office. The man was using the skid steer — a type of loader — to spread mulch on his employer’s property on the 4700 block of Rattek in Independence Township when a section of a large hardwood tree fell on his back. Authorities were called just before noon. “The impact forced his head forward into the steering levers of the machine and pinned him,” the Sheriff’s Office said in a news release. “The levers went into the subject’s head contributing to his death.” The man died as the region was under a high wind warning, with peak gusts of more than 60 mph expected.
Construction Worker Dies After Trench Collapses
SIOUX FALLS, S.D. – A family is mourning the loss of a 34-year-old construction worker that died on Thursday. Officials say he was working in a trench when one of the walls collapsed onto him. “We just had two individuals that were working on a construction site over here in a trench,” said Captain Rich Miller of the Sioux Falls Police Department. “It’s approximately 10 to 15 feet deep. While they were digging, there was a partial wall collapse.” One worker was trapped – buried underneath dirt. Police say nearby construction workers did their best to free the worker. Then, one of them called for help. Police say they were on the scene in Southeastern Sioux Falls in about two or three minutes. “The person was still in the ditch when fire rescue got here and then Fire Rescue actually went down into the trench and then retrieved the individual from there,” said Miller. Fire Rescue found the man unconscious and in cardiac arrest.
Funeral arrangements announced for slain Terre Haute officer
TERRE HAUTE, Ind. – Funeral arrangements were announced Saturday for a Terre Haute police officer killed in the line of duty Friday. Ofc. Rob Pitts’ visitation will be Tuesday. Pitts died Friday when he and three other officers responded to an apartment in The Garden Quarter around 6:30 p.m. as part of a homicide investigation. As two officers came up, police say the suspect started shooting at them. Patrolman Pitts was killed by a single shot to the head, according to the Vigo County Coroner’s Office. He was a 16-year veteran of Terre Haute P.D.
Las Vegas Captain Dies from Apparatus Wreck Injuries
Las Vegas, NV — A Las Vegas Fire-Rescue captain who was paralyzed from the neck down in an apparatus wreck nearly 15 years ago has died from his injuries. The Review Journal reports that Capt. Thelonius “Theo” Adams passed away Tuesday night in Las Vegas as a result of the injuries he sustained in a November 2003 apparatus rollover. The 54-year-old firefighter was a 13-year veteran of the fire service at the time of the accident.
Police ID utility worker killed by falling pole in Paauilo
Paauilo, Hawaii — Hawaii Island police have identified a 52-year-old man who died Wednesday in a fatal industrial accident on Highway 19 in Paauilo. The victim has been identified as Lyle Kaaihili of Waikoloa, according to the Hawaii Police Department. According to police, a utility company using a boom truck was replacing a utility pole on the shoulder of the highway near mile marker 35 when the accident occurred about 10 a.m. Wednesday. Witnesses told police that as the pole was being positioned into place, the boom collapsed and the pole fell onto the victim, who was an employee of the utility company.
Iron Ridge woman dies after truck hits ladder
TOWN OF WILLIAMSTOWN, WI — An employee of Advanced Disposal in the town of Williamstown injured in an industrial accident Monday morning has died. The Dodge County Sheriff’s Office reported Sarah Luebke was working on a ladder that was struck by a vehicle on the property, fell 10 feet and suffered a head injury. Flight For Life transported the 57-year-old to a trauma center where she later died.
NC lineman in bucket truck touches power line, blasted by thousands of volts
Mulberry, NC — A Pike Electric lineman blasted Tuesday with thousands of volts of electricity has died of his injuries in North Carolina, according to the Mulberry-Fairplains Fire and Rescue. T.C. Simpsom was working on a power line in the Mulberry community of Wilkes County, about 80 miles northwest of Winston-Salem, when the accident happened. He died after spending two days in critical condition, according to the department. Typical voltage for a local transmission line is 13,800 volts, experts say, while long distance lines can carry 155,000 to 700,000 volts, according to Slate.com. It’s unclear which type of line shocked Simpson.
Log truck driver killed in 2-vehicle crash near Monmouth
Monmouth, OR – A log truck driver was killed and another driver was injured south of Monmouth after their vehicles crashed Thursday along Oregon 99W. The 2002 Kenworth log truck hit a green 2002 Toyota pickup around 6:50 a.m. when the smaller truck pulled onto the roadway from Parker Road, according to Oregon State Police. The log truck driver, who hasn’t yet been identified by state police, died at the scene.
Work-related death under investigation
HENNESSEY, Okla. — A work-related death in Kingfisher County is under investigation. Occupational Safety and Health Administration is investigating the death of a Ranger Oilfield Services Corp. of Hennessey employee at Red Hawk disposal facility. After receiving a report around 6:30 p.m. April 28, 2018, OSHA responded and opened an investigation. Under regulation, companies have eight hours to report a work-related death, OSHA Area Director David Bates said. “We were back up there this week,” he said. “We will conduct an investigation to determine the causal factors, in an effort to try to prevent it from happening again. We have a six-month statute of limitations. We have six months to complete the investigation and issue any citations if we find any violations of our codes or the OSHA act.” According to an obituary, 52-year-old Dennis Stone, an employee of Ranger Oilfield Services Corp. of Hennessey, died in Hennessey on April 28.
Man crushed to death at pet food manufacturer in Ogden
OGDEN, Utah — A man was crushed to death at a pet food manufacturing plant in Ogden early Tuesday morning. A representative for American Nutrition said 33-year-old Raul Ortiz was an employee at the plant, and he was crushed to death after getting into a piece of equipment called a palletizer elevator around 3 a.m. It is believed Ortiz got into the palletizer elevator while the power was running, and the machine rose up and crushed him against the top of the elevator.
Woman killed after getting trapped, suffocating at Columbia construction site, coroner says
COLUMBIA, SC — A woman working at a construction site in Columbia was killed Tuesday, according to the coroner’s office. Diane M. Smith, 49, died after being involved in a construction incident, Richland County Coroner Gary Watts said. The Lumberton, N.C., woman was working on scissor lift at a job site when she became trapped between the ceiling and the railing of the lift, according to Watts
Vineyard worker who died in Sonoma tractor accident is ID’d
Sonoma, CA — A vineyard worker who died in a tractor accident Tuesday at a vineyard in Sonoma County was identified by the sheriff’s office as 34-year-old Franklin Palacios Carrillo of Fairfield. Carrillo was fatally injured at about 7:30 a.m. while he was cleaning mower equipment at 2340 Napa Road, according to a report Cal/OSHA received from Walsh Vineyards Management of Napa. Sonoma County sheriff’s deputies determined Carrillo died after becoming trapped and crushed under a tiller attachment to the tractor, Sgt. Spencer Crum said. Carrillo was trying to free vineyard wire from the tractor’s tilling tines. A worker found Carrillo dead under the tiller and called authorities.
Man dies after industrial accident at manufacturer in Danvers
Danvers, MA — A man suffered fatal injuries on Tuesday after an industrial accident reported at a manufacturing company in Danvers. The man — whose name has not been released — was transported from ITW Devcon on Endicott Street to Beverly Hospital, where he was later pronounced dead, officials said. Danvers police and fire officials responded to an apparent industrial accident at the manufacturer at 130 Endicott St. at 8:40 a.m., according to Deputy Fire Chief Robert Amerault. Amerault said they arrived to find an outside contractor who had been working on a piece of equipment when he fell from an unknown height off a ladder.
72-year-old man run over, killed by asphalt paver in Orange City
ORANGE CITY, Fla. – A 72-year-old man was run over and killed Tuesday after falling off an asphalt paving machine he had been operating in Orange City, police said. The freak accident occurred at the future site of a medical complex on Harley Strickland Boulevard. Orange City police said Ulysses Tolbert, of Deltona, was moving the asphalt paver to another area of the parking lot when he fell off the machine for an unknown reason. The machine ran over him and pinned Tolbert underneath, police said. Other contractors tried to use a Bobcat to lift the machine off the man, but the paver was too heavy. A large heavy-duty wrecker was brought in to move the paving machine off his body, police said. Tolbert was pronounced dead at the scene by Orange City Fire Rescue. Police said the paving contractor working on the lot is Pavemax Asphalt Services.
LCRA employee dies in on-the-job accident in Kendall County
San Antonio, TX — A Lower Colorado River Authority employee died Monday as a result of an accident at a substation northwest of San Antonio, officials with the water and energy utility said. The accident happened at around 4 p.m. Monday at a substation in Kendall County near Boerne, LCRA spokeswoman Clara Tuma said. No other information was immediately available.
Philadelphia Airport Employee Stabbed to Death By Co-worker Inside Terminal
PHILADELPHIA, Pa. — A 35-year-old man stabbed his 28-year-old co-worker in the stomach inside the Philadelphia International Airport terminal, according to police. A fight reportedly broke out between three employees of Worldwide Flight Services, a company contracted by Frontier Airlines to clean planes. Police believe a box cutter was used in the stabbing. The victim was taken to a hospital, where he died.
Sabine Parish man dies when crushed by boat
Sabine Parish, TX – -A Sabine Parish man died Tuesday morning when he was crushed by a 6,000-pound boat that he was working on, Sabine Parish Deputy Coroner Ron Rivers said. The victim, 35-year-old Jessie P. Clavier, of Many, died instantly at the scene. Rivers said the accident, reported to the Sabine sheriff’s office shortly before 9 a.m., happened at the Branam residence on Bayshore Drive located on Toledo Bend Reservoir north of Toledo Town. Clavier, an employee of B&K Branam Enterprise, was using a grinder underneath the boat, which was on land and hoisted into the air by a track hoe and one nylon strap. The boat had been up about 20 minutes when the strap broke and it fell on top of Clavier. Rivers said a witness said it took almost 10 minutes to get the 24-foot aluminum boat off of Clavier before emergency crews arrived.
Construction worker killed after falling off scaffolding
Alabama truck driver killed in wreck on Highway 45 Alternate
WEST POINT, MS — An Alabama truck driver is killed when his tanker rig crosses busy Highway 45 Alternate, crashes through a ditch, goes airborne and rolls to a stop in the outbound driveway of the Mossy Oak shopping mall in front of the Hampton Inn and Suites. Clay County Coroner Alvin Carter identified the victim as 49-year-old Neil Allen Hays, of Leroy, Alabama. He was driving for Suttles Trucking based in Demopolis, Alabama. Suttles owned the truck while Dana Corp. owned the trailer, which was loaded with 45,000 pounds of what is called “black liquor,” a by-product of pulp mill operations, according to West Point Fire Chief Ken Wilbourne. Hays was on his way to Tennessee when the accident happened at about 11 a.m. The 2004 Peterbilt truck was northbound on Highway 45 Alternate and had just crossed the railroad tracks near Lewis Odneal Drive when it veered across a northbound lane striking the rear of a 2013 Hyundai Elantra, driven by Debora Ware Poss, according to Police Chief Avery Cook. Without slowing down, Hays continued about 100 yards across the two southbound lanes, jumping the curb and continuing another 100 yards through the drainage area before coming to rest.
Fulton Township man among 4 killed after utility, septic trucks collide in York County
Lancaster, PA – A Fulton Township man was one of four killed in a York County crash Monday morning. Jonathan Beiler, 27, of the 100 block of Brabson Lane, died in the two-vehicle crash in the area of 7620 Lincoln Highway, according to the York County coroner’s office. Three Chester County men were also killed: Gregory Butcher Jr., 36, of West Chester; Reuben Fisher, 23, of Oxford; and Matthew Hurst, 24, Glenmore, according to a news release from the coroner’s office. The men were in a Little Washington Fabricators Inc. utility truck when it collided with a septic truck around 7:30 a.m., according to the coroner’s office. The westbound utility truck, driven by Butcher, reportedly crossed over the center lane into the path of the eastbound septic truck, according to the coroner’s office.
Crane accident at Arkansas bridge construction site kills 1 worker, injures another
Union County, AR– A crane that was being disassembled at an Arkansas bridge constriction site collapsed Thursday afternoon, leaving one worker dead and injuring another, the El Dorado News-Times reported. Eduardo Vasquez-Perales, 49, and Elvin Bermudes, 37, were dismantling the boom crane at the new Calion bridge site in Union County when the machine caved in on top of them, pinning them to the ground. Other workers used to a forklift to get the crane off the Mississippi residents, according to a Union County sheriff’s office report cited by the newspaper. Vasquez-Perales was reportedly taken to a nearby hospital, where he died.He had worked with W.G. Yates and Sons Construction Co. for five years, company spokesman Kenny Bush said.