|A man has died after being trapped in a rock-crushing machine in a Maryland quarry, officials have announced. His name has not been released.
“He was somehow entangled on the conveyor belt of the machine that he was operating and succumbed to his injuries,” Prince George’s County Bureau Chief Tracee Wilkins told NBC Washington.
The accident site is located in the 5400 block of Kirby Road in Prince George’s County.
The incident occurred around 10 a.m. on April 27, and the victim was pronounced dead soon after, fire officials said, but the remains could not be extricated until photos were taken and the scene was investigated. It appears that the man was wearing a harness that somehow became entangled in the crushing machine.
Few details have been given, but Maryland Occupational Safety & Health Administration officials will be launching an investigation.
Workplace fatalities have been reduced across the country in general, according to OSHA data. In 2013 (the latest year for which the agency provides statistics) there were 4,585 workplace fatalities, the second-lowest total since the first fatal injury census was conducted in 1992; however, that still works out to more than 12 deaths per day. There were a total of 3,007,300 workplace injuries reported in 2013.
The Maryland tragedy isn’t the only workplace fatality that has made headlines in recent days, either.
Bumble Bee Foods and two of its managers were charged April 27 due to a 2012 incident in which a worker in its Santa Fe Springs, CA, plant was cooked along with 12,000 pounds of canned tuna in an industrial oven.
The company, as well as Operations Director Angel Rodriguez and then Safety Manager Saul Florez, were charged with three counts each of violating OSHA regulations. Rodriguez and Florez could face three years in prison and fines reaching $250,000 if they are convicted, according to prosecutors, and Bumble Bee Foods could be fined an amount up to $1.5 million.
Prosecutions regarding workplace safety violations are very uncommon, so it is likely to be a closely watched case.