Monday, October 04, 2010

Weekly Toll: Death in the American Workplace

County Worker Dies in Backhoe Rollover

October 2, HANCEVILLE, AL - 68 year old Jimmy Hamrick was killed when the backhoe that he was operating turned over into Mud Creek a little less than a mile from Hanceville. “The man was operating the machinery near the edge of the creek when it turned over into the water and pinned him underneath,” said Cullman County Coroner Gary Murphree. The death was ruled a drowning.

Brinks Guard Shot and Killed During Robbery

October 1, MIRAMAR, FL - an unidentified Brinks guard was shot and killed when he was coming out of a bank in Miramar. The security guard was coming out of the Bank of America just east of University Drive and Miramar Parkway carrying cash, heading toward the armoured car when the robbery took place. A witness said the Brinks guard was shot in the head. UPDATE: Authorities have identified the guard as 48 year old Alejandro Nodarse.

Kansas Semi Driver Dies of Heart Attack

October 1, LITTLE RIVER, KS - 78 year old Marvin J. Joarnt of Little River died of an apparent heart attack while operating a tractor Friday afternoon, according to the Rice County sheriff. Joarnt was reported slumped over the wheel as the tractor turned in circles at a high rate of speed. The tractor was stopped in a matter of seconds when Dennis Galyon, Little River, shot the fuel line, Sheriff Dale Higgins said.

PennDOT Worker Struck and Killed in Work Zone

October 1, FOSTER, LA - 51 year old Jack Griffin was killed and a co-worker was severely injured when they were struck by a pick-up truck at 9:06 a.m. Friday on Route 646, also known as the Olean Road, in Derrick City. Griffin was serving as a flagman when the driver of a pickup truck apparently didn't see him and struck him. The truck continued on and hit a pavement cutting machine throwing the driver off the machine and injuring him.

Man Dies in Farm Tractor Rollover

September 30, NEWARK, NJ - 68 year old Ron Leas was killed Thursday afternoon after his tractor overturned on Homer Road in Bennington Township. Leas lost control of the tractor, which overturned, ejecting him from the vehicle.

Worker Dies in Plant Explosion

September 30, LEXINGTON, KY - 42 year old Jerry King, an employee at the Kingsford Charcoal Plant, has died today as a result of a flash fire at the plant. King, and other workers, suffered injuries related to the fire that broke out last Friday. Plant manager Tom Burkenpas has said a spark apparently ignited a small pile of particle-size charcoal, causing a flash fire. Authorities say the four men were using torches and welding equipment to repair a conveyor when the fire broke out.

Crossing Guard Killed First Day on Job

September 29, MOSS BLUFF, LA - 70 year old Roland Parker was killed his first day working as a crossing guard when a vehicle struck him and killed him while he was setting up cones for the school zone. Parker decided to take this job three weeks after he and his wife Esther moved back to southwest Louisiana from Las Vegas.

Man Killed in Construction Accident

September 29, ANCHORAGE, AK - 53 year old Jeffrey Kowalski, an employee with Red Dog Masonry, was killed Wednesday afternoon at the construction site of a new home, when the compactor roller he was driving slid off a terrace at the base of Potter Valley Road. According to police, Kowalski was terracing the site when he was crushed by his falling machine.

Man Electrocuted in Log Equipment Accident

September 29, DALE, OR - 53 year old Roger W. Weissenfluh of Fox was killed and another severely burned as they were loading logs and the loader boom came into contact with a live power line. Weissenfluh was standing between two vehicles and touching the loader when the boom hit the live power line.

Worker Dies After Being Caught in Equipment

September 29, SHELBYVILLE, IN - 56 year old Kelly Dean Caudill of Connersville, died after a factory accident in a Shelbyville auto glass plant on Wednesday. Caudill was trapped in hydraulic machinery. Coworkers pulled him out, but the man was still caught on an elevated platform. He was extricated after about 35 minutes and transported to the hospital where he later died.

Construction Worker Dies in Fall From Roof

September 29, BATON ROUGE, LA - 65 year old Thomas A. LeDuff Jr. died after he fell from a rooftop skylight. He fell from a maintenance building at the Forest Community Park. LeDuff Jr. was removing a flat roof from a maintenance shed as part of the park's renovation.

Bus Driver Killed in Plunge off DC Area Highway

September 29, BETHESDA, MD - 66 year old Joseph A. Clabaugh Jr., a commuter bus driver, died when the bus he was driving plunged off a highway outside the nation's capital. the bus fell 45 feet off a skyramp of the Capital Beltway and landed below along Interstate 270 in Bethesda, said Maryland State Police Sgt. Michael Brennan. Several passengers, including children, were injured and taken to the hospital. UPDATE: It is being reported that Clabaugh suffered a heart attack before losing control of his bus.

Well Respected Farmer Dies in Industrial Farming Accident

September 29, WESTMINSTER, MD - 36 year old Thomas Franklin Dell died Wednesday morning at the Dell Farm. Troopers were told by family that Dell was raising the hydraulic bed of a 42-foot trailer and he was electrocuted when the bed hit an electrical line.

Middle School Speech Therapist Found Dead at School

September 29, CADDO PARRISH, LA - 57 year old Linda Linson of Plain Dealing, was found Wednesday morning inside her car at Donnie Bickham Middle School in Caddo Parish. Her family reportedly called the school Wednesday morning searching for Linson who according to deputies did not return home Tuesday after work. Linson was a speech therapist employed by Caddo Parish Schools. An investigation is ongoing.

Worker Dies in Trench Collapse

September 29, OSHTEMO, MI - 58 year old Samuel Wilson of Burlington died when he became buried up to his neck in a trench collapse. Wilson was working for C. Johnson and Son Excavating. Crews were installing a sewage pipe in an eight foot deep trench at the base of a new home when it collapsed. His co-workers tried to dig him out but firefighters say the crushing weight of the dirt was too much.

Transportation Worker Killed Doing Maintenance

September 29, LAS CRUCES, NM - Jose Sanchez, who had a long career with the New Mexico Dept of Transportation, died Wednesday in an accident while performing maintenance duties. No details of what caused his death are listed.

Taxi Driver Found Dead in Cab

September 29, PLAINFIELD, NJ - 44 year old Isidro Leonardo, an employee for United Taxi Co., was shot to death in his cab early this morning. Leonardo was found in the driver's seat of his taxi on the 200 block of Spooner Avenue around 5:50 a.m., said Union County Prosecutor Theodore Romankow. He was rushed to the hospital where he died six hours later. An investigation continues.

Man Dies After Being Buried in a Farming Accident

September 29, PHELPS, NY - 19 year old David M. Crouch died yesterday after he was buried under a mound of cow feed. Crouch was using a Bobcat machine to load the silage — a mix of feed for cattle — and got out of the vehicle. That’s when the pile shifted and buried him, Frasca said. About four feet of feed fell on top of Mr. Crouch, deputies said. He suffocated under the load and was pulled from the pile by a family member deputies said.

Iowa Farmer Dies in Grain Bin

September 28, OAKLAND, IA - 69 year old Donald Herring died in a grain bin accident Tuesday. Herring and his wife were unloading corn from the grain bin into a wagon when the auger, a device for removing corn from the bin, became clogged and he went inside the bin to unclog fix the auger. Police are unsure of the circumstances but Herring somehow fell into the corn and eventually suffocated.

Tractor Trailer Driver Dies Suffering Heart Attack

September 28, EL PASO, TX - 56 year old Francis J. Gay died when his truck rolled over about 6 p.m. Tuesday on Interstate 10 east near mile marker 4. It appears Gay lost control of the truck after suffering a heart attack. He later died at University Medical Center, possibly from the heart attack and not from injuries suffered in the crash, Tovar said.

Worker Dies Moving Equipment

September 28, TULSA, OK - a 40 year old man, an employee for Wenco Energy Corp., has been killed while moving a piece of machinery at the company's storage facility in Tulsa. No other details are available at this time.

Gas Line Explosion Kills Utility Worker

September 28, CAIRO, GA - Wendell Harrison, a member of a City of Cairo gas crew, was killed while performing his job Tuesday when a gas line he was helping repair ignited. The gas crew dug up a metal line and was attempting to repair a pinhole leak in it when something caused the natural gas to ignite. Harrison's crew supervisor suffered burns to his arms and face in the incident.

Ohio Firefighter Dies at Fire Station

September 27, LYNCHBURG, OH - 57 year old Robert Hall fell ill while at the Lynchburg Area Joint Fire & Ambulance District firehouse and went into full cardiac arrest. Hall had exited a firehouse meeting and was preparing to perform apparatus checks when he became ill at approximately 7 p.m.

Woman Killed in Industrial Accident

September 27, FLAGSTAFF, AZ - an unidentified 38 year old woman, working for a local salvage yard, was killed Monday in an industrial accident. According to the sheriff's office the victim had been helping two men fix a Bobcat tractor with a malfunctioning front-end loader. The door of the tractor would not close and the loader was in the "up" position. While one of the men was in the tractor, and the other man trying to close the door, the loader came down. The victim was pinned between the front of the tractor and the loader.

Teacher Dies on Annual Middle School Trip

September 26, NUTLY, NJ - 56 year old Michael Lloyd Ryder, a longtime teacher at the Lawton C. Johnson Summit Middle School, died of an apparent heart attack on the annual school camping trip. Ryder collapsed at the end of the trip Sunday. Comments below the linked article give more insight into Mr. Ryder.

Death of Lawn Worker Ruled a Homicide

September 25, TULSA, OK - 29 year old Jamie Saldivar died Sunday after being injured September 15th trying to stop a thief. Saldivar was mowing a lawn when a man jumped into his pickup, which was connected to a trailer loaded with lawn equipment, and started to drive away, according to police. Saldivar ran after the truck, jumped onto a running board and tried to stop the driver who instead accelerated and Saldivar was thrown from the vehicle to the street, police said. He suffered a severe head injury and was in critical condition when he was taken by ambulance to St. John Medical Center. He died 11 days later, and the Oklahoma Medical Examiner’s Office has ruled his death a homicide.

Farmer Killed in Tractor Accident

September 24, COMSTOCK, TX - 74 year old Fred John Ross was killed Friday while working on a piece of equipment, Val Verde County Sheriff Joe Frank Martinez said. Witnesses say Ross raised the Bobcat’s bucket arm and was pulling parts off the Bobcat when the arm fell, pinning Ross between the bucket and the frame of the tractor. The report on the incident indicates that the falling bucket crushed Ross’ chest.

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