Sunday, August 01, 2004

Weekly Toll

So, this time arround, we've got 36 workers killed on the job, 10 who appear to be immigrants, several trench collapses, scaffolding falls and electrocutions. All in a couple of weeks' work.

Worker dies after falling off Richmond-San Rafael Bridge

A 36-year-old Concord construction worker was killed Friday afternoon when he was struck by a steel beam that knocked him off a lower deck platform on the Richmond-San Rafael Bridge.

The victim, Miguel Angel Rodriguez, was working with another employee on a gated platform 25 to 30 feet above the San Pablo Bay, said Susan Gard, a spokeswoman for the California Occupational Safety and Health Administration.

Gard said as a steel beam was being lowered, heavy wind caused the beam to lose control and strike Rodriguez in the head as it shattered through a wooden barricade at 2:30 p.m.

Highway worker hit and killed

Corpus Christie -- A 26-year-old construction worker died after being hit Friday by an 18-wheeler on Interstate 37.

About 1:45 p.m. Luis Garcia was helping to set up a construction zone near the Red Bird Lane exit. Garcia was employed with United Rentals, a company that takes care of traffic control by setting up barrels to divert traffic away from other construction workers ahead.

Police said the driver of the 18-wheeler was trying to exit onto U.S. Highway 77 and cut across part of the area being closed off. The driver hit Garcia, killing him instantly.

Man killed in accident at shipyard

A 21-year-old Texas man was killed in an industrial accident at a shipyard when he was pinned between two "man lifts" that carry workers to high spots, police said. The man, who was not immediately identified, was a painter working for Norfolk-based Network Industries.

A friend of the victim, Michelle Willcutts, says the victim came to Norfolk from Mexico and got a job with Network Industries to raise money for his family back home.

Scaffolding collapse kills one

NASHVILLE - Scaffolding collapsed Friday at an apartment construction site, killing one worker, trapping another who was critically hurt, and injuring five more, officials said.

The employees were trying to remove metal scaffolding in a narrow alley at the six-story Bristol on Broadway apartment building when the rig gave way around 7:30 a.m., Assistant Fire Chief Dave Warman said.

Brian Owen, 24, of Lyles was killed, according to police spokesman Don Aaron. His family members wept at the scene, declining to be interviewed. More here.

Electric shock kills worker

Syracuse -- A Skaneateles man was killed and his brother injured Friday morning when their dump truck came in contact with an overhead power line in the town of Skaneateles, state police said.

Paul S. Dobrovosky, 31, of 1075 Hencoop Road, received a fatal electric shock as he was helping to lay stone shortly before 11 a.m. on Fire Lane 50, off Route 41A about a half-mile north of the Cayuga County line, troopers said.

1 River Oaks officer killed, 1 hurt when vehicles collide

RIVER OAKS, TX – A police officer was killed Thursday morning and one was injured when their department vehicles collided while chasing a traffic violator.

Officer Nathan Laurie, 43, who had been with the River Oaks Police Department for about two years, was pronounced dead at Harris Methodist Fort Worth Hospital shortly after the 2:28 a.m. crash.

Investigators probe O'Hare luggage fatality

Chicago -- Job safety investigators were at O'Hare International Airport today, seeking to determine how a motorized baggage-hauling tug struck and overturned another luggage vehicle, fatally injuring its driver.

Alonzo Humphries, 29, who had worked for American Eagle since November, died of head injuries about an hour after the Thursday night accident, authorities said.

1 man killed, 1 injured when trench collapses

Pittsburgh -- A Franklin Park man died and another man was injured yesterday in the collapse of a trench in Beaver County that authorities said was not reinforced as required under federal health and safety standards. Marion E. Peters, 61, died at the scene in the 200 block of Silverdale Drive in Economy, said Deputy Coroner Skip Haswell.

Man dies in cave-in

NEWARK, OH -- Construction workers frantically tried to dig out a man buried alive when a sewer line trench collapsed Wednesday at a new subdivision in north Newark. "We were finishing up a job down the road when one of the guys on the trucks yell's, my God,'..." said concrete worker Dean Watson. "We ran over there with shovels and dug, and we found him, and we pulled his head up, and he still had a pulse and we keep digging and digging, trying to yank him out of there. We couldn't get him out, and his pulse stopped somewhere during that.

Authorities identified the dead worker as Gary Dillon, 40.

Worker Dies After Collapsing on Job

ROBINS, Iowa (AP) - Officials say a construction worker who died on the job in the eastern Iowa town of Robins earlier this week died of natural causes.

Fifty-one-year-old Larry Darling of Cedar Rapids died on Monday after collapsing. Police say he became ill and stopped breathing. He was taken to a Cedar Rapids hospital, where he died.
Robins is just north of Cedar Rapids.

Franconia police probe death of man killed by truck

Franconia, PA -- Franconia Township police are investigating the death of a Bucks County welder who was killed late Monday night after being pinned by a dump truck he was working on.

Police said Kevin Malloy, 38, of Pipersville, was working alone in the Shoemaker Welding Co. at 302 Leidy Rd. in Franconia. Police said Malloy was working on the truck with the dump bed raised.

For an unknown reason, the dump bed lowered, pinning Malloy between it and the truck cab.

Dominion Lineman Struck, Killed by Truck While Restoring Service

RICHMOND, Va. -- A Dominion Virginia Power lineman restoring electrical service near Montross, Va., early Wednesday was struck and killed by a truck.

William Dale Clarke, 44, of Tappahannock, Va., was a 22-year veteran employee of Dominion who worked at the Northern Neck-Lively office. He was completing work at a job site along State Route 202 when the accident occurred.

Painter dies of electric shock

PORT CHESTER, NY — A 25-year-old Port Chester man who worked as a painter was killed, and another painter was badly burned Monday when an aluminum ladder they were moving touched a power line.

Patricio Tenecela and another Port Chester man apparently were taking down the aluminum extension ladder at the Newtown Meeting House in Newtown, Conn., when it made contact with the power lines that run along a street near the building just before 4 p.m., police said. The Main Street building was being painted by Campbell Quality Painting of Newtown, police said.

Jefferson: County road worker dies following truck crash

Jefferson County, WA -- Jefferson County road department employees were mourning a fellow worker Monday after James B. Halvorson died in a Seattle hospital Friday.

Mr. Halvorson suffered severe injuries when his county pickup crashed into a tree at the side of Center Road, south of Chimacum, on July 15.

Hero police officer killed in Long Island crash

DIX HILLS, N.Y. -- A decorated Suffolk County police officer, who won acclaim in 2002 when he helped stop an out-of-control SUV on the Long Island Expressway, was killed in a one-car crash Tuesday on the Northern State Parkway.

Edwin Hernandez, 44, a 19-year veteran assigned to the Highway Patrol unit, was driving west shortly after midnight when he apparently lost control of his police cruiser, hit a guardrail and then a tree at the Dix Hills Road overpass, police said.

Construction worker falls in Gilbert, dies

GILBERT - A 25-year-old construction worker died of head injuries Saturday morning after falling off the roof of the Gilbert home he was working on. Manuel Guevara apparently fell when the 20 pieces of particleboard stacked on the roof of the house in the 2900 block of East Bonanza Court shifted. The particleboard then fell on him, causing his death.

Worker dies from gator attack

FORT MYERS - (AP) -- A professional landscaper who was mauled by an alligator died Friday in surgery to treat an infection caused by the animal's vicious bites.

Janie Melsek, 54, died at Lee Memorial Hospital. Doctors said her body simply shut down in response to the infection.

Melsek was attacked Wednesday by a 12-foot, 457-pound alligator as she worked on the landscaping behind a home on Sanibel Island. The alligator dragged her into a pond, tearing at her right arm so severely that part of it was later amputated.

Condo collapse death toll at 2

HOBE SOUND, FL · Two workers were killed and five were injured late Thursday afternoon when the third floor of the building under construction collapsed west of Hobe Sound. Another six construction workers at the Tranquility complex escaped injury, including a 13-year-old West Palm Beach boy.

At least 13 men were pouring and smoothing concrete to erect the building's third floor when the structure at Flora Avenue in Martin County gave way about 6:15 p.m.

The dead were identified by the Martin County Sheriff's Office as Gregorio Ruiz, of Wilton Manors, and Lauro Hernandez, who were working on the first floor of the three-story concrete and steel building. Their bodies were pulled from the wreckage early Friday morning.

Olathe Worker Electrocuted While Installing Light Pole

OLATHE, Kan. -- A worker for the city of Olathe was killed Friday when he was electrocuted while installing a light pole, KMBC's Donna Pitman reported.

The incident happened around 11:35 a.m. near Santa Fe and Indian Wells Road. Two workers were installing the pole when it somehow came into contact with a live wire. Benito Alvarez, 27, was electrocuted.

Cal/OSHA probes racetrack death

Petaluma, CA -- Petaluma police are focusing on possible human error that could have contributed to the death of Randolph E. Clifton, a racing official killed Saturday when he was struck by a race car at the Petaluma Speedway.

They are examining whether the steering wheel in the race car was properly attached and whether Clifton was in the correct position on the track.

Officer killed in hit-run on way home from work

A popular Oakland police motorcycle officer returning home from work was struck and killed Thursday on a San Leandro freeway by a hit-and-run trucker who was later arrested, authorities said.

Officer William "Will" Seuis, 39, of Pleasanton, a well-respected 15-year veteran, was in full uniform and riding his 2001 Harley-Davidson police motorcycle when he was hit at 2:11 p.m. by a white 1996 Freightliner truck as it changed lanes on eastbound Highway 238 at Ashland Avenue.

"The trailer did hit the officer, knocked him off his bike, and he was pulled underneath the trailer's tires," said Officer Dan Hesser of the California Highway Patrol.

Police Honor Fallen Comrade

There was a stirring tribute for a Metro Police Officer killed this week in the line of duty.

Friday, hundreds of officers took part in the funeral processional that led from south Nashville to Dickson for Officer Christy Dedman.

Dedman was killed when her cruiser, parked on the side of the road, was hit by a tractor trailer on Monday while she assisted a stranded motorist.

Load Of Glass Crushes Worker At Construction Site

JACKSONVILLE, Fla. -- A worker died Friday morning after investigators said a load of glass panels he was unloading fell on top of him at a Northside construction site.

Just after 10 a.m., rescue crews and police were called to the area of Pine Estates and Dunn Avenue, where an addition is being put on a medical building.

Police said 60-year-old Bobby Stephens, an employee of Mac's Glass and Mirror, was crushed by the weight of 15 large panels of glass.

Officials Consider Charges After Officer Dies In Collision

ANNAPOLIS, Md. -- The Anne Arundel County State's Attorney's Office is working with state police to determine what happened in a crash that killed a Maryland Transportation Authority police officer, and what charges the driver of a pickup truck that hit the officer's cruiser should face.

Police told WBAL-TV 11 News that the officer, identified as Duke Aaron III, had just finished writing a citation. He died after a pickup truck rear-ended his unmarked cruiser that was parked on the highway's shoulder.

WORKER dies on site in Cohoes

COHOES, NY - A construction worker died at a work site here Wednesday, and a city code enforcement official is saying a construction company's failure to use proper equipment contributed to the accident.

John Duesler, 59, of St. Johns- ville, was at the bottom of a 10-foot-deep trench in a new housing complex called Brighton Point off Western Avenue when heavy, clay-like dirt collapsed around him at about 10:30 a.m.

Cohoes Code Enforcement Officer Joseph Monast visited the scene and said the accident may have been avoided if proper equipment had been used. He said the construction company working on the site, which Heslin said was K and M Construction, was not using a trench box, which allowed the dirt to cave in."The ditch wasn't shored up," Monast said.

Man electrocuted at concrete firm

NEW HARTFORD, CT -- Andrew D. Riopel loved his sons and being a New York Mills volunteer firefighter.

Riopel, 34, New York Mills, was working on an electrical box about 12:47 p.m. Tuesday when he was shocked at Madden Concrete's Campion Road site, New Hartford police Sgt. Marc Marziale said.

OSHA looking into death at Angoon lodge

Juneau, AK -- The federal Occupational Safety and Health Administration is investigating a weekend accident at an Angoon lodge that led to the death of a man working there.

Troy S. Payne, 61, was cutting an empty 500-gallon fuel tank with an acetylene torch Saturday, said Gary McCoy, operations manager for Whaler's Cove Lodge, on an island near the village about 55 miles southwest of Juneau.

State troopers reported Wednesday that Payne was seriously burned and flown to Seattle, where he died Sunday.

Worker Electrocuted Near Local Freeway

A worker was electrocuted while working near a freeway ramp in Allen Park Tuesday morning, according to Michigan State Police.

The 47-year-old Dearborn Heights man was apparently working on a high-voltage electric line near the ramp from M-39 to Interstate 94 east when the accident occurred.

Second rescue worker dies as search winds down

JOSHUA TREE NATIONAL PARK, CA -- As a second search and rescue volunteer injured in a Saturday morning crash while on his way to look for a missing hiker died Tuesday, authorities began scaling back the search for the 17-year-old in the Joshua Tree National Park. Phillip Calvert, 58, of Mentone was pronounced dead at 2:36 a.m. at Desert Regional Medical Center in Palm Springs.

He was taken to the medical center following the crash early Saturday in Morongo Valley that killed another San Bernardino County Sheriff’s Department San Gorgonio Search and Rescue Team member, Scott Johnston, 30, of Redlands. The men and three others on their team were on their way to join in the efforts being made to find San Diego County teen Eric Sears when their vehicle was struck head-on at Highway 62 and Piedras Trail.

Two killed when crate falls on them

HUYETT, Md. - Two workers were killed when a crate of drilling equipment fell on them along U.S. Route 40 west of Hagerstown, police said.

State police identified the men as Mark Goshorn, 25, of Blair Mills, Pa., and Jamie Peterson, 24, of Shade Gap, Pa.

Police said the victims were helping lay underground cable when a crate of drill bits fell off a drilling machine on top of them.

State worker killed in crash near Normal

NORMAL, IL -- A state employee was killed in a traffic crash three miles north of Normal Monday, McLean County Coroner Beth Kimmerling said in a statement.

The crash involving a pickup truck and a semitrailer truck happened about 8:45 a.m. on Interstate 39, the coroner said. Douglas M. Keenan, 43, of Somonauk, the pickup truck driver, was dead at the scene at 9:12 a.m.

Worker killed when bulldozer overturns

MOUNT PLEASANT, S.C. - An immigrant worker died at a country club after the bulldozer he was driving overturned and crushed him. Silvestre Alba Cano, 22, of Guatemala was an immigrant who was authorized to work in this country, said Charleston County deputy coroner Bobbi Jo O'Neal.

The accident happened about 12:45 p.m. Monday at the Snee Farm Country Club. Cano was driving the bulldozer on an incline when the vehicle tipped over and trapped him. He was pronounced dead at the scene.

Since Jan. 1, the Occupational Safety and Health Administration has investigated 20 workplace deaths, said Jim Knight, a spokesman for the state Department of Labor, Licensing and Regulation. Of those, five involved Hispanic workers, he said.

Tree service employee dies; was working to clean up after Louisville storm
LOUISVILLE, Ky. -- A man working for an Arkansas tree service company following storms that raked Louisville died after part of a tree fell on him, a deputy coroner said.

Steven Mosher, 36, of Texarkana, Ark., was injured about 6:40 p.m. EDT Sunday and died a short time later at University hospital, according to Jack Arnold, a deputy Jefferson County coroner.