Monday, February 9, 2009

Forklift Fatalities - part 4

This case was investigated by the NIOSH Fatality Assessment and Control Evaluation (FACE) Program. This case report was selected it represented one of the most common types of fatal forklift incidents: (1) forklift overturns, (2) workers struck, crushed, or pinned by a forklift, and (3) falls from a forklift.

Case 4-Worker Struck by Forklift

A 39-year-old female punch press operator at a computer components manufacturer was fatally injured while performing normal work tasks at her station. A forklift was traveling in reverse at high speed toward the victim's work station. A witness observed the forklift strike a metal scrap bin (about 3 by 5 by 3½ feet), propelling it toward the punch press station. The bin hit the press and rebounded toward the forklift. There it was hit once again and shoved back against the corner of the press, striking and crushing the victim against the press.

Contributing factors to this accident may include (but are not limited to) lack of separation or barriers between pedestrians and forklifts, lack of sufficient forklift safety training and operator error.

1 comment:

  1. This sad incident shows the hazards involved in the work place. There are a number of factors that need examining here, which if they had been implemented, this tragedy may not have occurred.
    1. Anywhere there are moving parts and vehicles, in the near vicinity of workers, there should be some sort of safety barrier separating them from one another.
    2. Health and safety rules ensure moving machine parts are out of reach behind some sort of safety barrier when in operation.

    If there had been a steel barrier fitted this would have saved or at least reduced the impact force and may have prevented loss of life.

    Drivers too should be aware of the dangers of high speed driving in confined areas, especially where workers are close at hand.

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