Forklift accidents have caused many fatalities nationwide, including in the state of New York. A recent workplace accident was reported to be the third forklift-related death on Long Island in 2016. Sadly, many of the lives lost in on-the-job accidents could have been prevented by compliance with federal safety regulations.
The Occupational Safety and Health Administration prescribes safety regulations that are specific to the handling of forklifts. Not only do they cover the safe operation of the machines but also address concerns related to elevating workers on forklifts. Both these hazards came into play in the recently reported accident. OSHA is investigating the incident and will likely focus on the company's compliance with safety regulations.
An incident report indicates that the accident occurred on a recent afternoon at the premises of a provider of natural nutritional products in Hauppauge. Reportedly, a 64-year-old man fell 10 feet from the platform of a forklift. Police say the fall was caused when the forklift was struck by an operator of another forklift. This caused the victim to lose his balance and topple off the elevated lift.
The man was rushed to a hospital with severe head injuries, but he was declared dead upon arrival. The trauma that a fatal workplace accident can cause to the surviving family members is surely devastating. They will be able to seek financial relief by filing death benefit claims with the New York workers' compensation program. While a lost life can never be replaced, financial assistance with end-of-life expenses and lost income may provide some level of relief.
Source: Hauppauge, NY Patch, "Man Killed in Forklift Accident in Hauppauge", Ryan Bonner, Sept. 2, 2016