An estimated 14% of on-site deaths are caused by machine accidents every year, and 2016 has been no exception. A construction worker died in a tragic accident on Tuesday after being struck by a payloader and then somehow ended up in a truck carrying hot asphalt, according to the New Haven Register.
The man, who police said was 55 years old, was a long-time employee of West Haven-based Pereira and Sons Construction.
Crews were working on a sewer project on the West Haven-New Haven line when the man was struck by a backhoe. He then ended up being buried by asphalt at the site.
The worker was transported to an area hospital where he succumbed to his injuries.
Accidents like this one have sparked activism across the country. So much so that Universities like Keene State have started taking steps to offer preventative courses.
Sixty-four safety professionals interested in learning new skills and updating their knowledge of critical OSHA regulations, as well as 20 college students majoring in safety and occupational health applied sciences, recently attended seven consecutive, all day construction safety programs at Keene State.
The month-long program was offered in coordination with Keene State’s Region 1 OSHA Training Institute Education Center. Professionals from 16 New England businesses, including Children’s Hospital of Boston and MassBay Electric, were in attendance.
Falls, electrocutions, impact from objects, and being caught in or between objects are four of the main causes of deaths on construction sites. Eliminating these four main causes of death through critical training and education could save upwards of 508 workers every year.
Program attendees learned how to interpret and apply OSHA regulations to assure the safe operations of cranes, scaffolds, confined spaces, and other crucial skills. Instructors used Keene State’s Technology, Design, and Safety Center’s “Safety Tower” to provide participants with hands-on fall protection.
Training programs like the one offered at Keene State could save the lives of countless construction workers like the one injured and killed in West Haven.
“It’s everyone’s worst nightmare,” West Haven Mayor Ed O’Brien said at the scene.
The city’s officials will be conducting an independent investigation, according to the Register.
Police have yet to release the victim’s name, pending notification of his family.