Friday, January 07, 2011

Weekly Toll: Death in the American Workplace

Dump Truck Driver Struck by Car

January 6, YORKTOWN, VA - 55 year old Ralph "Benny" Newman Jr. was struck and killed by a car Thursday morning while he stood on the side of the road, officials said. Newman was driving a dump truck in the 9300 block of Pocahontas Trail when he pulled off onto the shoulder of the roadway and exited the vehicle when the driver of a car sideswiped the dump truck and struck Newman.


Recycling Worker Dies at Facility

January 6, EAST POINT, GA - 19 year old Eric Hilario-Martinez, an employee for Newell Recycling, was found dead after emergency workers responded to a call at the facility and found a front end loader in flames. Hilario-Martinez was found severely burned after the flames were extinguished. The cause of the fire is under investigation.


Station Assistant Manager Shot and Killed

January 6, OMAHA, NE - 54 year old Milton E. Jackson was shot and killed Thursday at the Shell Rapid Lube business where he worked. Omaha police have not said whether the shooting was the result of an attempted robbery or something else. The suspect fled after walking into the business and shooting Jackson.


Tree Trimmer Dies From Fall

January 5, BREMERTON, WA - 28 year old Aaron B. Waag of Hansville died when his safety harness malfunctioned or somehow detached from the boom crane he was on, causing him to fall some 70 to 100 feet down onto a concrete walkway on Wednesday. He was trying to reach the limb of a large fir tree when he fell. Waag was a member of Waag Tree Service, a family-owned business based in Poulsbo.


School Vice Principle Killed by Angry Student

January 5, OMAHA, NE - 58 year old Vice Principle Vicki Kaspar was shot and killed and the principle for Millard South High School was injured when an angry student entered the school and opened fire on the administrative staff. He targeted Kasper and the principle in the shooting. After the shooting, the student fatally shot himself in his car.


Worker Crushed Under Heavy Bale of Clothing

January 5, SEATTLE, WA - 63 year old Trinidad Ruiz died from crushing injuries to her head, body and extremities, according to the King County Medical Examiner's Office when a bale of clothing fell onto her. She worked for Buffalo Exports. Her death has been ruled an accident.


Company Officials Die in Plane Crash

January 5, MIDLOTHIAN, TX - 58 year old Stephen Vannais of Mooresville, NC and 40 year old James Polewchak of Midlothian were killed Wednesday in a plane crash. Vannais was a wire/cable representative for Davis-Standard LLC of Pawcatuck, CT and Vannais was the President for JP Industrial that supply products to the plastics industry. Witnesses said the plane had just taken off, and had banked hard left and then crashed into some trees.


Worker Dies in Confined Space

January 5, SALEM LAKE, NC - 62 year old Herman Wilson died Wednesday after he and two other workers were overcome by fumes while replacing old water valves at Salem Lake. The crew worked for J. Ramey Copnstruction Inc and were contracted through the city to repair the raw water pipeline between Salem Lake and the Thomas Water Treatment Plant.


University Employee Dies After Fall

January 5, SEARCY, AR - 61 year old Teddy Joe Pike, a longtime physical resources employee for Harding University, died Wednesday after falling from the rooftop of the Mabee business building Tuesday morning. Pike was installing heating and air equipment on an addition to the building when he fell and landed on the second story’s concrete floor.


Ammunition's Plant Explosion Kills Worker

January 5, OAKLAND, TN - 34 year old Murray Clifford Davis Jr., an employee of the Kinematics Research ammunition's plant, was killed in a fire and explosion and fire at the plant. Davis is the only employee missing after the fire, but his body has not positively been identified through dental records. The plant makes shells for pistols and rifles. "The scene is still actively being worked," said Eric Kehn, a spokesman for the ATF in Nashville.


Police Chief Killed in Scuffle

January 5, RAINIER, OR - Rainier Police Chief Ralph Painter was shot and killed by a suspect he was struggling with. Columbia County deputies stated "the officer made contact with the suspect at a car stereo store and a struggle ensued. Painter was wounded with a gunshot and later was pronounced dead." Police think the suspect's aim was to steal a car.


Deputy Dies of Injuries Suffered in Car Crash

January 4, RICHMOND, TX - 39 year old John Norsworthy, Deputy with the Fort Bend County Sheriff's Department, died Tuesday from his injuries after he crashed his squad car December 27, possibly to avoid a vehicle that failed to yield to his emergency lights and siren. The deputy was responding with his lights flashing and siren blaring to assist another deputy conducting a traffic stop on a vehicle with suspected stolen parts, officials said. His squad car flipped and pinned him for more than an hour.


Bar Employee Shot Trying to Break Up Fight

January 4, LAKEWOOD, CO - 33 year old Jose Beltran-Galindo, an employee for El Torito Bar & Grill, was shot and killed as he escorted two male customers outside after some sort of fight in the bar, according to police. Police have issued a warrant for the suspect believed to have shot Beltran-Galindo.


Fisherman on Lobster Boat Dies

January 4, HARPSWELL, ME - 68 year old Jerry Wallace, a stern man on a Harpswell lobster boat, stopped breathing while fishing Tuesday morning and died later in the day. Sheriff’s deputies and a Cundy’s Harbor Rescue ambulance met the boat and took Wallace to Mid Coast Hospital, performing life-saving measures — which were unsuccessful — en route.


Delivery Driver Killed When Truck Hit by Train

January 4, DAYTON, TN - 52 year old Terrell Hampton of Soddy-Daisy, a UPS delivery driver, was killed when his truck was hit by a southbound Norfolk Southern train Tuesday afternoon, a Tennessee Highway Patrol incident report shows. When Hampton pulled onto the railroad tracks that didn’t have crossing arms, the train struck the truck on the driver’s side, the report shows.


Tractor Trailer Driver Dies in Crash

January 4, TOWSON, MD - 39 year old Russell William Lewis of Baltimore died in a fiery crash when his rig crashed through a barrier and then into an unoccupied van. Troopers are trying to determine whether Lewis suffered a medical emergency or fell asleep prior to the collision. Troopers do not believe alcohol or speed were a factor in the collision.


Worker Dies in Trench Collapse Working on Bridge

January 4, ALLENTOWN, PA - 20 year old Michael J. Wilson, of Downington, died Tuesday while working on the Linden Street Bridge. According to Assistant Fire Chief Lee Laubach, the embankment along Jordan Creek collapsed onto the victims. Wilson and his co-worker, who was rescued, were in a 6 foot trench when it collapsed and buried them. Both men were part of a crew working for J.D. Eckman Inc., a bridge construction company from Chester County.


Firefighter Dies in Crash Responding to Call

January 3, SHAPLEIGH, ME - 58 year old David E. Remington of Acton, a firefighter for the Shapleigh Fire Dept., was killed Monday night in a crash while responding to a rescue call. Remington was headed to a call on Owls Nest Road at 10 p.m. when he lost control of his 2005 Chevrolet pickup on Shapleigh Corner Road about one mile from Route 109. The truck rolled over and he was ejected, according to the York County Sheriff's Office, which is investigating the crash.


Teacher's Aide Died Saving Student

January 3, BOURBONNAIS, IL - 46 year old Thomas "Jim" Dunn, a teacher's aide for Camelot Therapeutic Day School, died when he was hit by a bus protecting a beloved autistic student. Dunn and his student were returning from a daily trip across the street to get a soda when a city bus approached. Dunn instinctively pushed the student out of the way and was hit. He died a short time later.


Construction Worker Killed in Wall Collapse

January 3, WINONA, MN - 52 year old William Abts of Fountain City, WI was killed in an eastern Minnesota construction accident when he was crushed during demolition work. Abts was cutting rebar in the wall with a torch when a large piece of concrete fell on him, said police. He was working with a partner at the time of the accident.


Young Mother Dies in Farming Accident

January 3, VALDOSA, GA - 35 year old Amy Blackledge died Monday in an accident involving a farm tractor. Mrs. Blackledge was trying to pull her husband James' tractor, which had stalled in the field, when the tractor she was driving turned over. She became pinned under the tractor and died of crushing injuries. She leaves behind her husband and her 9 month old child.


Night Club Bouncer Killed in Fight

January 1, PORTLAND, OR - 32 year old Ruben Mata, an employee for Club 915, was shot and killed in a fight that started inside the club and moved to the street outside. Witnesses say it started as a fight on an upper floor of the club, which was packed with New Years revelers. Bouncers herded two fighting groups outside, where the brawl resumed and escalated until gunshots rang out.


Deputy Sheriff Shot and Killed

January 1, SPRINGFIELD, OH - 40 year old Deputy Suzanne Hooper, from the Clark County Sheriff Dept., was shot and killed Saturday as she tried to photograph a footprint in the Enon Beach mobile-home park in western Ohio, Sheriff Kelly said. Police officers were trying to talk to the shooting suspect when he fired on them from inside a trailer. What began with a sheriff's deputy investigating a report of gunfire at a trailer park ended in the deadly shooting, where the suspect was also killed.


Hospital Employee Victim of Homicide

January 1, BETHESDA, MD - 40 year old Roosevelt Brockington Jr. of Lusby, Lead Engineer for Plan Operations at Suburban Hospital, was found stabbed to death in a non patient area of the hospital. Detectives believe that it is more likely that this was not a random act of violence. The motive for the murder remains under investigation.


Mechanic Killed While Working on Semi

December 31, DADE CITY, FL - 28 year old Jorge Rameriz, a mechanic for Contreras Brother's Trucking Co. was killed instantly when he was working under a semi-tractor trailer that somehow gave way and rolled over him. The preliminary investigation shows the incident appears to be accidental.


Maintenance Worker Killed in Fall

December 31, KOKOMO, IN - 61 year old Claude Brock Jr., a maintenance technician for the Chrysler Group's Casting Plant, died when he apparently stepped over a guardrail and fell to his death. Michelle Ellison, director of the INSafe division of the Department of Labor said “... We’re not positive what he specifically was doing or trying to reach for.”


Antique Store Owner Killed in Robbery

December 31, ENGLEWOOD, FL - 64 year old Jeffrey Mazur, owner of Antiques Plus, was the victim of a robbery on Dec 29. He died of his injuries Friday. The man suspected of committing the crime has been arrested in Mr. Mazur's murder.


Fire Chief Dies On Duty

December 31, ATHENS, MI - 68 year old Chief Thomas Gordon Hardy, of the Athens Fire Department, collapsed and died while he was cleaning equipment after a fire Christmas Eve. Other firemen heard him fall and ran to where he was working and began CPR. He had been in a coma for the past week until he was pronounced dead on Friday.


Industrial Accident Causes Death at Lumber Company

December 31, VANCE, AL - 22 year old Fernando DeLeon Ixcoy was killed by a log that struck him after it fell from a bark-stripping machine, said Tuscaloosa County Metro Homicide Unit commander Capt. Loyd Baker. The accident occurred at Ky-KenKee Inc., a timber company on U.S. Highway 11. His death is being further investigated.


Firefighter Dies of Work Related Cancer

December 30, WOODINVILLE, WA - 45 year old Matthew Durham died of a duty related cancer. It's the first line-of-duty death for Woodinville Fire and Rescue. Cancer is a presumptive disease in firefighters but his esophageal cancer wasn't one of them. Jacobs was forced to prove his illness was job related to get workers' compensation so poured over 650 records of fires he worked. Jacobs' work helped get legislation that's made esophageal cancer one of the cancer forms assumed to be job related in Washington.


Mother Stabbed to Death Where She Worked

December 30, ATLANTA, GA - 25 year old Kejuan Charde Hall was working at the Golden Pantry Convenience store when she was found in a back office stabbed to death. Two people were seen in the store, thought to be cleaning, when another customer went into the restroom. When he came out the lights were off. That customer and another man looked around the dark store for an employee and came upon Hall's body in the back office, police said. Hall leaves behind an 8 year old daughter and was two months pregnant.


Worker Killed in Forklift Accident

December 30, SUFFOLK, VA - 35 year old David Arthur Blutz was killed Thursday when a forklift/front-loader backed over him. The accident occurred at McKinney's Auto Parts.


Tractor Trailer Crash Kills One

December 29, ELLABELL, GA - 53 year old Charles Gary Moore of Ellabell was killed when the tractor trailer he was riding in overturned in South Carolina. He was ejected from the truck's sleeper compartment as it overturned. The driver was treated at a local hospital.


School Vice Principle Shot to Death by Student

January 5, OMAHA, NE - 58 year old Vice Principle Vicki Kaspar was shot and killed and the principle of Millard South High School was injured when an angry student opened fire on the administrative staff of the school. The student aimed for the principle and vice principle. The student then went to his car and killed himself.


Worker Crushed Under Heavy Bale of Clothing

January 5, SEATTLE, WA - 63 year old Trinidad Ruiz died from crushing injuries to her head, body and extremities, according to the King County Medical Examiner's Office when a bale of clothing fell onto her. She worked for Buffalo Exports. Her death has been ruled an accident.


Death From November Just Found

November 5, ST. JOSEPH, MO - Rory Griggs was killed when he was pinned between two trucks in the parking lot at MFA, Inc. while working for Deshon Brothers Inc. Court documents claim the accident occurred because Deshon hit truck's gas pedal rather than the brake and was not paying attention.

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