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Yard-worker dies after forklift dropped a unit of wafer board on him while he was stacking and straightening lumber.

Indiana State Department of Health
Morgantown, WV: U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, Public Health Service, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health, FACE 96IN066, 1996 Sep; :1-4
On June 4, 1996, a 16 year-old male yard-worker (the victim) died after a 4,320 pound unit of wafer board fell on him at the home service center where he worked. The victim and a co-worker were stacking and straightening lumber behind three stacked units of wafer board totaling 9 feet 4 inches in height and 8 feet in width. A forklift approached from the opposite side of the stacked wafer board for the purpose of retrieving the top unit. The forklift operator did not see the victim and co-worker because the wafer board blocked his view. As he attempted to lift the top unit off the stack, it became dislodged and fell forward onto the victim. The forklift operator immediately went to the aid of the victim who was found under the wafer board semi-conscious but breathing. A local emergency medical service (EMS) provider was called and responded promptly to the scene. The victim was transported to a hospital where he died the same day. The FACE investigator concluded, in order to prevent similar incidents, employers should: 1. Ensure that workers continually adhere to the safe work procedures that have been established by the employer. 2. Encourage all employees to actively participate in workplace safety. 3. Routinely conduct scheduled and unscheduled worksite safety inspections.
Region-5; Accident-analysis; Accident-prevention; Accidents; Injuries; Injury-prevention; Traumatic-injuries; Work-practices; Lumber-industry-workers; Retail-workers; Equipment-operators
Publication Date
Document Type
Field Studies; Fatality Assessment and Control Evaluation
Funding Type
Cooperative Agreement
Fiscal Year
NTIS Accession No.
NTIS Price
Identifying No.
FACE-96IN066; Cooperative-Agreement-Number-U60-CCU-508672
SIC Code
Source Name
National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health
Performing Organization
Indiana State Department of Health
Page last reviewed: September 2, 2020
Content source: National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health Education and Information Division