Tuesday, November 22, 2016

Construction worker fell 40 feet to his death from a malfunctioned forklift platform at the the under-construction Castle banquet hall in Pequannock, New Jersey

Worker, 21, dies after fall in Pequannock after improper use of the forklift
Michael Izzo , @MIzzoDR 2:39 p.m. EST November 21, 2016

A worker was fatally injured last week following a fall from a forklift at a Pequannock construction site, police said.

At about 1:27 p.m. Friday, officers responded Route 23 South at the site of the under-construction Castle banquet hall for a report of an injured worker, Capt. Christopher DePuyt said.

While officers were responding, dispatch was advised that medical assistance was not needed as coworkers were taking the injured man to Chilton Medical Center, DePuyt said.

The man, 21, from Belleville, was pronounced dead in the Chilton Emergency Room at 1:46 p.m., DePuyt said.

Back at The Castle, officers secured the accident site and contacted the state Occupational Safety and Health Administration, DePuyt said. The investigation was then turned over to OSHA.

A preliminary investigation indicated the 21-year-old victim was being lowered to the ground by a forklift at the time of the accident when the machine suffered a mechanical failure, causing the forklift attachment to detach from the rest of the unit, DePuyt said.

The 21-year-old – who was standing on a wooden pallet on the end of the forklift at the time – then fell 40 feet to the ground, suffering fatal injuries, DePuyt said.

The workers on site were transporting a ladder off the structure to the ground at the time of the accident and OSHA said that was not a proper use of the forklift.The worker was not identified by name Monday and OSHA’s investigation is ongoing.


By Justin Zaremba | NJ Advance Media for NJ.com
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on November 21, 2016 at 10:23 AM, updated November 21, 2016 at 3:45 PM

PEQUANNOCK — A 21-year-old Belleville man died Friday after he fell from the end of a forklift at the construction site for The Castle banquet hall on Route 23, police said.

The worker was standing on a wooden pallet on the fork end of the forklift when an apparent mechanical failure occurred and the fork end detached, causing the man to plummet about 40 feet, Pequannock Capt. Christopher DePuyt said.

Township police were notified of the incident at about 1:27 p.m. and were told medical assistance wasn't needed because the worker was transported by co-workers to Chilton Medical Center, DePuyt said.

The man was pronounced dead at the hospital's emergency department at 1:46 p.m.

Falls are the leading cause of death in the construction industry, according to OSHA.

Workers were in the process of removing a ladder off of the structure to the ground when the mechanical failure occurred, DePuyt said.

DePuyt said the investigation has been turned over to the federal Occupational Safety and Health Administration. OSHA investigators, he said, indicated the way in which the forklift was used during this incident was improper.

The Castle is an 85,000-square-foot banquet hall currently under construction by Badanco Holding Company. Messages placed to Badanco Holding Company on Monday morning haven't yet been returned.