Friday, February 13, 2009

Forklift Fatalities - part 6

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 6-Fall from Forklift

A 61-year-old male maintenance manager of a shelter for the homeless died after falling 7 feet from a safety platform that had been elevated by a forklift. The victim had been raised in a steel-framed, cage-type safety platform that had not been secured to the forklift. The victim removed a fluorescent light bulb from its fixture and stepped to one side of the safety platform. When the victim shifted his weight from the center of the platform to the outer edge, the safety platform toppled off the forks. The victim fell about 7 feet, struck his head on a concrete floor, and was subsequently struck by the steel safety platform.

Contributing factors to this accident may include (but are not limited to) lack of sufficient forklift safety training and operator error.

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