weekly toll

How workers died last week: Machinery, forklift, grain bin, fire, shootings, vehicle incidents,  On average, over 100 workers are killed every week in the United States due to traumatic injuries suffered at work. More than 20 times as many die from occupational diseases, many due to exposure to hazardous substances many years before they died. The few narratives below (gathered from almost 100 Google News searches) do not come close to capturing the full toll that work takes on the working people of this country. Nevertheless the accounts below gave you a taste of the preventable carnage occurring in workplaces across the country every day.

Lumber truck driver killed after crashing into ‘group of large trees,

BRUNSWICK COUNTY, Va. — The drive of a tractor-trailer carrying lumber was killed in a wreck in rural Brunswick County Friday morning. Troopers were called to the single-vehicle crash on Route 46 north of Woodley Avenue just after 9:35 a.m. according to Sgt. Michelle Anaya with Virginia State Police. “The preliminary investigation has revealed that the driver… ran off of the roadway and struck a group of large trees,” Anaya wrote. “The tractor-trailer was fully loaded with lumber.” Officials said 52-year-old John Oliver Harrison, of Lawrenceville, Virginia, died on impact. “There is no indication that Harrison was under the influence or that speed was a factor,” Anaya said.

Truck driver killed in I-10 semitruck collision near Fabens in El Paso County

El Paso, TX — A truck driver died in a collision involving two semitrucks on Interstate 10 near Fabens, the El Paso County Sheriff’s Office said. William Diaz, 56, died at the scene of the crash, which occurred about 10:30 p.m. on Saturday, March 9, on the westbound lanes of I-10, the Sheriff’s Office said. Diaz’s hometown was not disclosed. Sheriff’s officials have not released any other details about the fatal collision, including what occurred and the name of the other driver.

Truck driver killed after crashing into overpass

Oakland, CA — A 76-year-old Pittsburgh resident was killed Saturday morning after the truck he was driving crashed into an overpass. The incident occurred at 10:26 a.m. Saturday in the 3500 block of West Street in West Oakland. Police say a Volvo D16 three-axle truck was traveling northbound on West Street with its hydraulic roll-off bed in the elevated position. Roll-off beds are mechanically operated platforms that can be raised or lowered, such as a tow truck bed. As the truck was traveling northbound, it struck the I-580 overpass at 35th and West Street. The driver, who police said did not appear to be wearing his seatbelt, was thrown partially through the front windshield of the truck by the impact. No other vehicles were involved in the collision. The man was a 76-year-old Pittsburgh resident whose name is not being released. He was pronounced dead at the scene.

21-year-old dies after accident at Club Car in Evans

EVANS, Ga. (WRDW/WAGT) – A 21-year-old Club Car contractor has died after an accident at the facility in Evans, officials say. On Friday evening, a contract labor worker experienced a critical injury, Club Car officials say. Coroner Keith Cox termed it an industrial accident. According to the Coroner’s Office, the victim, Alyssa Drinkard, of Grovetown, died later at a hospital. The Columbia County coroner confirms her time of death was 5:50 p.m. Club Car officials stated: “Our sincere condolences and thoughts are with the family, friends and all impacted by this loss. We are working with authorities and the contractor in an investigation to determine the facts about what led to the incident.”

Border Agent, 2 members of New York National Guard killed in Texas helicopter crash

Rio Grande City, TEXAS — Two New York National Guard members died in a helicopter crash in Texas while patrolling the US-Mexico border on Friday. John Grassia III, 30, was one of the victims who died when the UH-72 Lakota helicopter crashed near Rio Grande City, Texas. He was also a New York State Police trooper, who joined the force in April 2022. Chief Warrant Officer 2 Casey Frankoski, 28, of Rensselaer, New York, was also killed in the fatal incident. Grassia, a pilot, and Frankoski were assigned to Detachment 2, Company A, 1st of the 224th Aviation Regiment, New York Army National Guard. A U.S. Border Patrol agent, Chris Luna, also died in the crash and another New York Army National Guard Soldier was seriously injured. The army says the group was conducting “monitoring and detection” operations at the time of the crash.

Genesee County deputy who died in line of duty was a loving father and son, family says

BATAVIA, N.Y. — The family of Sgt. Thomas Sanfratello, the Genesee County sheriff’s deputy who was killed in the line of duty, said he was a loving father, brother, and son. Sgt. Sanfratello died early Sunday morning while responding to a fight at Batavia Downs. We would just like our privacy at this difficult time and he will be remembered as a loving father, son, brother and sheriff and will be greatly missed by all that knew him. Sgt. Sanfratello, who served 32 years with the Genesee County Sheriff’s Office, died after an unruly patron attacked him. The 54-year-old was working on a special assignment detail at the Batavia Downs.

Nurse shot to death after robbery, carjacking at senior living facility in Raleigh, police say

MEMPHIS, Tenn. – A nurse died following a robbery and carjacking at a Raleigh senior living facility. Memphis Police (MPD) are identifying the victim as a woman, confirming she was shot. Police also confirmed the shooting was the result of a carjacking. FOX13 spoke with people who have loved ones who live at the facility. “It’s horrible. I can’t imagine anybody wanting to take somebody over a car,” said Shannon Fuller, whose mom lives at the senior community. MPD told FOX13 that the woman shot to death was a nurse. The incident happened at the Wesley Stage Park Senior Living Facility in Raleigh.

Man dies in industrial accident

LAWRENCE, KS — A man died after an industrial accident Saturday morning at Unitex Textile Rental Services, 155 Shepard St. The man, whose name, age or hometown is not being released, was brought to Lawrence General Hospital in cardiac arrest and passed from his injuries, according to Deputy Fire Chief Jack Meaney. The man got tangled in machinery will installing a dryer, Meaney said. Meaney added that the Lawrence Fire Department was dispatched to the scene at 8:22 a.m. By the time he was removed from the machine, the man was in cardiac arrest, said Meaney. The man was not an employee of Unitex but an employee of the company installing the machinery, said Meaney.

Georgia Pacific Mill employee dead after industrial accident

CAMAS, Wash. — A man is dead after a workplace accident at a Washington mill Friday evening, according to the Camas Police Department. At around 5:04 p.m., Camas police, as well as the Camas/Washougal Fire Department, responded to the Georgia Pacific Mill. They found a 32-year-old male employee dead inside, police said. Heavy machinery appeared to have played a role in his death. After an investigation by the Camas Police Department, it was determined that “this was an unfortunate workplace accident.”

Lawrenceburg man killed in industrial accident

LEXINGTON, Ky.- A man has died after an apparent industrial accident at Montaplast of North America in Frankfort. The Fayette County Coroner’s office says that Gregory Dever of Lawrenceburg suffered “multiple crushing injuries” at the facility before being transported to Frankfort Regional Medical Center. Dever was relocated to the University of Kentucky Medical Center where he succumbed to his injuries. Dever’s death is currently being investigated as an accident, this story will update as more details become available.

Man dies in forklift accident in rural York County

YORK COUNTY, Neb. (KSNB) – One person is dead following a forklift accident near Benedict. The York County Sheriff’s Department said 24-year-old Ponciano Nimaja-Gutierrez from Guatemala died Tuesday night in a workplace accident near the intersection of Road 22 and Road H about four miles west of Benedict in rural York County. Lieutenant Alex Hildebrand said upon arrival, it was determined that the man was accidentally run over by a forklift. The sheriff’s office is not releasing the name of the victim until next of kin have been notified.

Erie Man, 32, Dies in Tragic Industrial Accident at Schuylkill County Plant

Kline Township, PA — An industrial accident at a decommissioned CoGen plant in Kline Township, Schuylkill County, has resulted in the untimely death of a 32-year-old man from Erie, underscoring the critical need for stringent safety measures in industrial environments. First responders were called to the scene on Plant Road around 1:00 PM, where emergency teams from Kline Township, McAdoo, and Hazle Township, alongside a Schuylkill County deputy coroner and McAdoo Fire Chief Bob Leshko, confirmed the fatality. The victim was identified as Dennis Fleming. The accident occurred in the early afternoon when Fleming was reportedly involved in dismantling activities at the old power plant. Preliminary investigations suggest that instability during the stripping process of the plant may have led to the fatal incident. This tragic event brings to light the inherent risks associated with decommissioning industrial sites, especially those not in operation.

Truck driver killed in collision near Clara City

Clara City MN — A semi driver was killed Tuesday when his truck and a pickup collided near Clara City. The state patrol says the crash was reported at 5:08 p.m. on Highway 7 at 60th Avenue Southeast, about 4 miles west of Clara City. A semi driven by 59-year-old Timmy Tarnowski of Pelican Rapids was eastbound on Highway 7, and a pickup driven by 32-year-old Georgii Gabiev of Brooklyn New York was northbound on 60th when they collided. Tarnowski was killed, and Gabiev was taken to CentraCare Rice Hospital in Willmar with non-life-threatening injuries.

94-year-old dies in a grain bin accident while helping unload soybeans

TABOR, Iowa (WOWT/Gray News) – A 94-year-old man died in a Iowa grain bin Monday, according to the Fremont County Sheriff’s Office. Officials with the sheriff’s office said it appeared Robert Smith was helping in a bin unloading soybeans while running a grain vacuum when he died. Smith’s son was reportedly outside moving the tractor-trailer they were loading at the time. When he returned, he found Smith under the beans. Smith was pronounced dead at the scene. His body is being sent to the state Medical Examiner’s Office to determine an official cause of death.

Name released of worker killed at Optimus Steel in Orange County

ORANGE COUNTY, TX — The Orange County Sheriff’s Office is releasing the name of a contract worker killed when a piece of machinery caught fire at Optimus Steel. John Robert May, 61, of Vidor, died in the accident at about 2 p.m. Monday in the plant near Rose City. According to a statement Optimus Steel sent to KFDM/Fox4 News, a contractor was removing waste from a steelmaking process. This task occurs approximately every hour while the plant is operating. While the reason is unknown at this time, the equipment the operator was using caught on fire. The operator sustained injuries from this fire and was transported to a local hospital, where he died. A judge has ordered an autopsy to determine the cause of the man’s death. The Sheriff’s Office and OSHA are investigating.

Man found dead in tanker trailer

VIRGINIA, Minn. – A man was found dead in a tanker trailer Thursday afternoon in Virginia. According to Virginia Police, officers responded around 3:45 p.m. to an industrial area near Menards on reports of an unresponsive 39-year-old man in the trailer. We’re told there were reports the area near the trailer potentially contained hazardous materials. First responders quickly determined the man had died. The Duluth Hazardous Material Response Team was deployed to assist. The Minnesota Duty Officer and Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) were notified of the incident.

Officer killed, another injured while serving warrant in California

San Luis Obispo, CA — A California police officer was fatally shot and another was injured while serving a search warrant Monday. Few details were available Tuesday morning in the shooting, which occurred at an apartment on Camellia Court in San Luis Obispo. The injured officer was stable at a hospital, according to the San Luis Obispo Police Department. Police killed the suspected shooter, the department said in a tweet. The names of the officers and the suspected shooter were not released.

Broward Transit employee dies in shootout with deputies after killing coworker

Pompano Beach, FL — A Broward Transit employee is dead after he was involved in a shootout with Broward Sheriff’s Office deputies after fatally shooting his coworker in Pompano Beach late Wednesday night, officials said. BSO officials said deputies responded to reports of a shooting near the 3200 block of West Copans Road shortly before 11:30 p.m. While deputies were arriving to the scene, they were told that a man had been shot and that the shooter was possibly still in the area, officials said. As deputies arrived, they found the armed suspect, who fired at the deputies, officials said. The deputies returned fire, killing the 59-year-old suspect at the scene. Detectives learned the suspect shot and killed his 42-year-old coworker prior to the shootout. Both men were employees at Broward County Mass Transit and worked at a one of the county’s maintenance centers, officials said. Their names haven’t been released.

Truck driver killed in Botetourt County crash

BOTETOURT COUNTY, Va. (WDBJ) – A truck driver was killed in a crash in Botetourt County, according to Virginia State Police. The crash happened just after 9 p.m. Tuesday near mile marker 173.8 on Interstate 81, about a mile and a half south of High Bridge Church Rd. Police say Warner Scott Baker, 51 of Pearisburg, was driving a Freightliner tractor trailer when the vehicle ran off the road and overturned. Baker, who was wearing a seatbelt, died at the scene.

Texas truck driver killed on I-20 in Shreveport

CADDO PARISH, La. (KTAL/KMSS) – The Caddo Parish Coroner’s office has released the name of a man killed in a wreck on I-20 on Feb. 5. Raymond Lofland, Jr., 67, died in a two-vehicle collision in the westbound lanes of I-20 near Bert Kouns Industrial Loop and Pines Road. The wreck occurred just before 6 a.m. Lofland was pronounced dead at the scene after suffering severe head trauma. He was identified through fingerprint comparison.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

Discover more from Confined Space

Subscribe now to keep reading and get access to the full archive.

Continue reading