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Forklift injuries: frequent and sometimes fatal

It's been a couple of months since we last wrote about forklift injuries.

In our October 4 post, we wrote about a fatal accident in which a forklift driver collided with a truck driver who was picking up a load at an industrial plant.

Unfortunately, such accidents are not infrequent occurrences. In today's post, we will take note of another such accident. Though it occurred in Boise rather than Baltimore, the accident is a stark reminder of the dangers of forklifts and other vehicles in a work setting.

After all, there are good reasons why federal regulators define a forklift as a "powered industrial truck."

The Boise accident involved a worker whose forklift tipped over. When it tipped over, the man fell out and was killed. He had been working, preliminary reports indicated, on a sidewalk near an office building used by the Idaho state government.

Deputies from the sheriff's office responded to the scene. The Boise office of the Occupational Safety and Health Administration will also be investigating.

It remains to be seen, then, whether any workplace safety violations occurred in connection with the forklift driver's death.

It is not uncommon to find such violations after a workplace injury or death. Forklift accidents are certainly not an exception to this general rule.

Not surprisingly, lack of adequate safety training is also often an issue in forklift injury cases. Indeed, failure to provide sufficient safety instruction is a frequent cause of workplace accidents.

And today's accident in Boise is another reminder of how frequently such accidents involve forklifts.

Source: Idaho Statesman, "Pacific Steel & Recycling employee dies in forklift accident in Boise," Katie Terhune, Dec. 16, 2013

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