Weekly Toll

Last week two workers were killed in grain facilities, 8 migrant farmworkers were killed in a traffic incident, workers were killed in a coal mine, a chemical release, fall into trash compacter, workplace violence, electrocution, forklift and vehicle incidents and falls. 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.

Employee dies in grain engulfment incident at Hamilton MFA facility

Hamilton, MO — MFA Incorporated has confirmed the death of an employee on May 17 in a grain engulfment incident at the MFA Hamilton Rail Facility east of Hamilton on Highway 36. MFA Communications Director Steve Fairchild reported that a second employee was flown to Kansas City and released with minor injuries. MFA President and Chief Executive Officer Ernie Verslues stated that the deceased employee was “an extraordinary team member who embodied [the company’s] values.” Counseling resources have been brought in to support employees impacted by the incident. Verslues emphasized that MFA’s “number one priority is the health, safety, and well-being of [its] workforce.”

Athens man dies after UGA construction site accident

Athens, GA — A worker at a University of Georgia construction site reportedly died Friday after being struck by a forklift. The victim was identified as 36-year-old Trevor Wilkie of Highland Park Drive in Athens, according to Athens-Clarke County Coroner Sonny Wilson. The incident happened before 10 a.m., officials say, when Wilkie, an employee with IMI Construction in Watkinsville, was working on a campus steam line project when he was accidentally struck by the forklift. The construction site reportedly is located between the Miller Learning Center and Tate Student Center. Wilkie was taken to Piedmont Athens Regional Medical Center where he died from his injuries.

Cement worker killed in crane collapse during storm in Houston

HOUSTON, TX – A cement worker is dead after officials said a crane collapsed on top of him during Thursday afternoon’s storms. Houston police said the incident happened around 6:45 p.m. on Wingate and 75th Street. According to reports, several cement trucks were parked in the area when the wind caused a crane to fall, which crushed a 72-year-old man.  Texas Concrete worker Francisco Hernandez and a colleague sought shelter in their trucks at a job site in the 7300 block of Wingate, along Buffalo Bayou, as the wind picked up. ” said Pablo Bolanos, a plant operator for the company. Two cranes plunged to the ground as the worst of the storm hit, hitting their respective concrete trucks and landing across the nearby railroad tracks. One of the workers was injured, while Hernandez was killed. Bolanos said Hernandez, who had worked at the company for two years, had a wife and three children.

Crane driver killed in work accident

SALT LAKE CITY, UT — A man was killed while driving a crane at a worksite located in the Summit County area Saturday morning. A call came into the Summit County Sheriff’s Office at 8:15 a.m. about an adult male who was driving a crane, when it rolled over an embankment and crashed. According to the Summit County Sheriff’s Office, Harold “Buck” Parker, 50, of Heber City, died in the accident.  Deputies said Parker was driving a small crane at a job site shortly after 8 a.m, when the vehicle rolled over an embankment and into a ditch, crushing him. Parker died from his injuries by the time fire personnel arrived. Currently, Sotelo said there are multiple law enforcement and fire department still at the scene. No other injuries were reported.

Man Trapped in Grain Bin Near Balaton Pronounced Dead Despite Rescue Efforts

BALATON, MN — On Tuesday, May 14th, 2024, at 3:17 PM, Murray County Dispatch received a report of a man trapped in a grain bin at 720 211th Street near Balaton, MN. Witnesses at the scene reported that the man was completely submerged in grain and could not be located. Emergency responders from multiple agencies, including the Murray County Sheriff’s Office, Balaton Fire Department, Balaton Ambulance, Tracy Fire Department, Garvin Fire Department, North Memorial Air Care, and Marshall Fire Department, were dispatched to the site. The victim, identified as 48-year-old Bruce Andrew Larson from rural Balaton, was eventually extricated from the grain bin. Despite the efforts of medical personnel to save him, Larson was pronounced dead at the scene. According to information gathered at the location, Larson had entered the grain bin to install grain handling equipment. During this process, he became submerged in grain and was unable to escape.

Apparent Amazon truck tire blowout near Tonopah kills 2 people

MARICOPA COUNTY, Ariz. – An apparent tire blowout on an Amazon truck on I-10 near Tonopah ended in two people being killed on Thursday afternoon, Arizona DPS said. The May 16 crash happened near 339th Avenue on the eastbound side of the highway around 2 p.m. “It looks like an Amazon tractor-trailer may have experienced a blowout which may have caused the driver to lose control and strike the overpass,” DPS said. The semi-truck driver, 40-year-old Abdullahi Muhammed Abdi, and co-driver, 35-year-old Fadhi Hamdi Ali, suffered serious injuries and died.

Man dead after shooting at a Miami Beach club

Miami Beach, FL — Police responded to a shooting at 1532 Washington Avenue, where they found a man suffering from a gunshot wound. A shooting at a Miami Beach club left a man dead early Sunday morning. Miami Police officials said officers responded to the shooting just before 2:30 a.m. near Exchange South Beach at 1532 Washington Avenue, where they found a man suffering from a gunshot wound. “Officers immediately began the CPR process until Miami Beach Fire Rescue arrived,” said Miami Beach Police spokesperson, Officer Christopher Bess. The victim was transported to Jackson Memorial Hospital, where he died. Marley Case was fatally shot around 2:30 a.m. Sunday outside Exchange South Beach at 1532 Washington Avenue, where he was the head of security, police said

Iowa DOT worker killed in construction zone crash on I-80 in Pottawattamie County

POTTAWATTAMIE COUNTY, Iowa — One person was killed in a crash on Interstate 80 Thursday morning. The crash happened near a construction zone outside of the town of Weston. The Iowa State Patrol says 41-year-old Clifford Miller, of Pennsylvania, tried to pass a semitruck in the eastbound lanes around 9:15 a.m. ISP says Miller, a USP driver, hit 36-year-old Matthew Dickerson of Neola as he was doing patch work in the left lane. Dickerson, an Iowa Department of Transportation worker, was killed.

Eldora worker crushed by a tree while doing trail maintenance at the ski area

Eldora, CO — An Eldora Mountain Resort employee was killed Thursday morning when a tree fell on him. The 52-year-old man, Louis Miller, was helping with trail maintenance when the tree fell, the Boulder County Sheriff’s office said. Ski patrollers provided medical care, including CPR, while they waited for a Flight for Life Colorado helicopter, but the man died on the scene. The man’s identity was not released by the sheriff. The resort has been closed to skiing since April 21. An Eldora spokesman said the resort’s ground team is working with local authorities to investigate the accident. The Colorado Sun annually surveys 16 county coroners across the state to compile a list of skier deaths at ski resorts. The on-mountain death Thursday is the 15th for the 2023-24 season.

Coal miner dies Thursday in Wyoming County

CHARLESTON, WV — A coal miner died on the job in Wyoming County on Thursday, according to information from Gov. Jim Justice’s office. Virgil Paynter, of Lynco, West Virginia, was fatally injured Thursday morning at the CM Energy Operations LP Surface Mine while operating an excavator. Paynter’s death marks the first coal mine fatality in West Virginia in 2024.

Employee killed near Valhalla Golf Club ahead of 2nd round of 2024 PGA Championship identified

Louisville, KY — A vendor employee is dead after being struck by a shuttle bus early Friday morning near the front gate of Valhalla Golf Club on Shelbyville Road, according to a statement from PGA of America. “This morning we were devastated to learn that a worker with one of our vendors was tragically struck and killed by a shuttle bus outside Valhalla Golf Club. This is heartbreaking to all of us involved with the PGA Championship. We extend our sincere condolences to their family and loved ones,” the organization said in a post on X, formerly Twitter.

Ellipsis staffer who died was shoved, hit her head at center for troubled youth

Johnston, IA — The Ellipsis Iowa staff member who died Tuesday fell and hit her head after a 15-year-old resident allegedly shoved her, her attorney says. Kathleen Galloway-Menke, 50, of Des Moines, was assaulted outside of the facility for troubled youth at 7085 Northwest Beaver Drive in Johnston on May 8. She was taken off life support Tuesday afternoon after she was declared brain dead, according to family attorney Trever Hook. Per Ellipsis protocol, she and another staff member followed the resident at a safe distance after he had left campus, Hook said. “At some point, he turned and ran at the two staff members,” Hook told the Des Moines Register. “The male staff member was in front, and he ran by him to Kathleen and pushed her, causing her to fall abruptly and hit her head on the concrete, causing brain damage.” Before pushing Galloway-Menke, Hook said, the resident allegedly threatened to kill her. Hook said the mother of two likely died from brain damage from the shove.

Driver killed in incident at Arizona facility that is being built by a Taiwanese semiconductor giant

PHOENIX, AZ — A truck driver has been killed after a tank holding waste material depressurized at a construction site in Phoenix, where workers are building an advanced semiconductor manufacturing plant that could supply tens of millions of chips for powering smartphones, vehicles and data center servers. Cesar Anguiano-Guitron, 41, was taking waste material away from the Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Company plant site in a tractor trailer Wednesday, police said. Anguiano-Guitron was inspecting the tank for a potential problem when an uncontrolled pressure release occurred, causing him to be struck by a blunt object and thrown over 20 feet (6 meters). He was taken to a hospital, where he died from his injuries. Police said the incident is under investigation. Officials with TSMC Arizona said in a statement that no company employees or onsite construction workers were injured and there was no damage to the plant’s facilities.

Man killed after falling into trash compactor at UPS Dallas facility

DALLAS, TX — A man working as a vendor for UPS died after reportedly falling into a trash compactor at a UPS facility in Dallas, officials said. Dallas Fire-Rescue officials in a news release said they were dispatched shortly before 11 a.m. to a UPS facility at 10155 Monroe Drive in Northwest Dallas, where someone reportedly “fell into a trash compactor.” Police confirmed a man fell into the compactor. The fire department’s search and rescue crew responded and got the man out, but he died at the scene, officials said. UPS officials said in a statement that the man was a vendor for UPS and that the company was “working with authorities” to investigate the incident.

Identity released of man who died falling from elevator shaft in Erie

Erie, PA — The Erie County Coroner has identified the man who died after falling down an elevator shaft inside a West 12th Street business. The victim is identified as 71-year-old Igor Akopyan, of Erie, and has been ruled an accidental death due to multiple blunt force trauma from the fall. Man dies after falling down elevator shaft in City of Eri. The incident happened just after 5 p.m. Tuesday at Andy’s Equipment Exchange. According to Erie County Coroner Lyell Cook, an employee had discovered Akopyan at the bottom of the shaft after noticing the doors open. “The victim was a longtime employee of that business and it was an un-witnessed incident. Elevator doors were open but the car was one floor above and for whatever reason he fell down into the elevator shaft and dropped two stories,” said Cook.

Man dies in electrocution accident near Hardin

Hardin, TX — A 22-year-old Baytown man was electrocuted and died in an industrial accident around noon, Tuesday, May 14, at a property off of Private Road 171C off of FM 2830 North in the Hardin area. The accident location is near the Liberty Municipal Airport. According to Capt. David Meyers, a spokesperson for the Liberty County Sheriff’s Office, the deceased man, was delivering supplies to a tree-trimming work crew. The crew and the man worked for R & R Pipeline Company. The deceased man reportedly grabbed the tongs of a fork lift holding up a tree. Unbeknownst to the him, the tree had inadvertently made contact with live electric lines, and he was electrocuted through contact with the forklift. He was transported by Allegiance EMS to Liberty-Dayton Regional Medical Center with CPR in progress and was pronounced dead at the hospital a short time later.

47-year-old dead after industrial accident at Muskogee Vallourec

MUSKOGEE, Okla. — A 47-year-old man is dead following an industrial accident in Muskogee, according to police. Police said at around 9 a.m. Monday, they responded to an industrial accident at the Vallourec location off Port Place, near the Water Plant. According to police, when they got there, they learned a 47-year-old man died from his injuries from the accident. Police said the victim’s name is not being released at this time. FOX23 reached out to the Muskogee Vallourec over the phone and was told they had no comment at this time.

Man dead after motor home falls during tire change in Canandaigua

Canandaigua, NY — A Yates County man was killed in a roadside accident in Canandaigua on Monday afternoon. According to the Ontario County Sheriff’s Office, Jarod G. Brown, 38, of Dundee, Yates County, was on the side of the road on Route 21, near Hickox Road, when he became trapped underneath a motor home around 5 p.m. Brown was attempting to change a tire when the motor home fell off the jack and he became trapped underneath, deputies said. Emergency responders removed Brown from underneath the motor home, but he was pronounced dead at the scene, deputies said. Deputies and the Occupational Safety and Health Administration are investigating the incident.

Construction worker killed in large hole identified as former Rutgers athlete

Kenilworth, NJ — A construction worker who died last week after being trapped in a large hole in Union County has been identified as a 29-year-old Union County resident who previously wrestled for Rutgers University. Corey Greg Stasenko, of Cranford, died May 6 while attempting to install a storm drain while using an excavator in the rear of the business on Monroe Avenue in Kenilworth, authorities said. First responders attempted life-saving measures, but Stasenko was pronounced dead at the scene, authorities said.

Eight killed after bus carrying migrant workers crashes in Florida

Marion county, FL — Eight people were killed and dozens injured after a bus carrying migrant workers to a local farm crashed in Florida early Tuesday. The crash happened around 6.30 am in west Marion county, Florida, according to the Florida highway patrol, WCJB reported. The accident involved a 2010 International bus transporting workers and a 2001 Ford Ranger truck, NBC News reported. The two vehicles “sideswiped” each other, causing the bus to swerve off a local highway, drive through a fence and flip over. About 53 people described as “migrant workers” were onboard the bus at the time of the crash, according to Florida highway patrol. They were reportedly being taken to a local watermelon farm to work for a private company at the time of the accident, the Ocala StarBanner reported.  The names of the eight were: Santiago Benito Jesus, 24; Jose F. Acosta, 27; Isaias M. Pascal, 21; Manuel Perez Rios, 46; Cristian Salazar Villeda, 24; Evarado Ventura Hernandez, 30, Alfredo Tovar Sanchez, 20 and Oscar Temoxtle, 31. Alfredo Tovar Sánchez had arrived in the U.S. only 15 days before to work and save money for his marriage. He never found out that his fiancée is two months pregnant.

Another worker killed at Oak Grove Power Plant in Robertson County

ROBERTSON COUNTY, Texas (KBTX) – Robertson County emergency crews responded Monday morning to the Oak Grove Power Plant for another fatality incident involving a worker on site. According to sources, a worker suffered “severe head trauma” and was pronounced deceased. KBTX has contacted Luminant, the company that manages the plant for additional information. Luminant did not share any details about what happened on Monday but did share this statement, calling what happened “a difficult day.” “We are shocked and saddened over the loss of our friend and teammate. We extend our deepest condolences to his family and all those who love him. We are working to understand what occurred this morning. Our immediate focus is on the family and the well-being of our people. Onsite counseling and other resources are being made available to our team members as they cope with this difficult loss.” he Oak Grove Power Plant near Franklin made news following a deadly boiler explosion in May last year. In that incident, a 50-year-old man died from multiple injuries. In February last year, four workers at the plant were also sent to hospitals following the release of a chemical.

Dump truck driver killed in I-270 crash in Montgomery County

MONTGOMERY COUNTY, Md.— Maryland State Police (MSP) said that one person died after a crash on northbound Interstate 270 on Monday. In a post on the X platform, MSP said that troopers responded to a crash that was reported just after 10 a.m. near Route 109. MSP said that a dump truck and a 2019 Ford Transit were involved in a crash. The dump truck then hit a bridge abutment and flipped into a ravine. The driver of the dump truck died there. He was identified as 54-year-old Rodney Lee Gibson, of Frederick.

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