Weekly Toll

Man, 32, Killed After Barge Overturns in Guilford GUILFORD, CT — One person is dead after a barge carrying eight people overturned in Guilford Saturday, police said. At 2:20 p.m. Saturday the police and fire departments responded to the Guilford Yacht Club at 379 Whitfield St. after a barge overturned, resulting in several people in the water,…

Construction Company Owner Charged with Manslaughter in Trench Death

Nothing sharpens the mind like the prospect of spending time in jail. Those of you who know me know that there’s little that makes me more angry than seeing a worker killed in a trench collapse. Every construction company owner knows how to prevent trench collapses — or they should know, or shouldn’t be in…

Boiled to Death, Buried Alive and Leg Ripped Off: The Stories Behind the Statistics

One of the fathers of occupational health, Irving Selikoff, once said that “statistics are people with the tears wiped away.” Today, the statistics look bad. This week we learned that coal mining deaths doubled in 2017, and rose to their highest point in three years. Fifteen miners died on the job in 2017, compared with eight…

Weekly Toll: Last Workers to Die in 2017. Let’s hope 2018 is better

Bad couple of weeks for workers in Kansas and firefighters across the country. Also two trench deaths and a food processing worker whose leg was ripped off. Last list of workers killed during 2017. Good Riddance. Let’s hope for a better 2018. Man Killed Loading Road Salt at Kentucky Facility Identified LOUISVILLE, Ky. (AP) —…

“We were supposed to have another 20 years.” Death in the Trench

“Touching” “Infuriating” and hopefully “Educational” and “Motivating” are all words that come to mind reading this amazing article, Death in the Trench, by veteran investigative reporter Jim Morris. You should probably stop here and read it, but I can’t help providing a few reasons why. Morris, writing for the Center for Public Integrity, tells the…

Weekly Toll: Workers Age 19 to 60 Won’t Be Coming Home

Worker Dies in Industrial Accident at Northern Idaho Mill ATHOL, Idaho (AP) — Authorities say a worker at a northern Idaho lumber mill died in an industrial accident on Friday. The Kootenai County Sheriff’s office says the 45-year-old man was fatally injured while trying to clear a broken piece of wood from a machine at the Merritt Brothers…

Kansas City Star Calls on Trump, Congress to Give OSHA Tools It Needs

Following up on its article (and my blog post) on the tragic trench death of DJ Meyer last December, the Kansas City Star has published a strong editorial calling on the Trump administration to “appoint a permanent leader for OSHA without delay. The agency should pursue an aggressive role in adopting workplace safety rules. And Congress should…

Trench Death: ‘Mom, I got in a ditch today, and it started caving in on me and I got out’

There is so much sad and infuriating about this story that it’s hard to know where to begin. How about here? Donald J. “DJ” Meyer was buried alive last December 10 at the bottom of an unshored 12-foot deep trench in Belton, Mo. Meyer, an employee of Arrow Plumbing, had a 9 year old son,…