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California workplace accidents: Plastics company site of fatality

California workplace accidents can often end in serious injury or death, but if safety issues exist prior to such an accident a company can face serious fines and penalties. Another accident has occurred at a plastics company. The worker involved was attempting to service a forklift when he was killed. Workplace accidents that involve a fatality can end with the family receiving workers' compensation benefits that could help them pay for last expenses associated with their loved one's death and help offset the effects of a major loss of income.

The worker was operating a forklift to lift another forklift up so he could service it. The second forklift fell and fell on top of him. The second lift crushed the man's head. Authorities received an emergency call from the company, but when paramedics arrived the man was pronounced dead. OSHA is now involved in the investigation and will determine whether the company had appropriate safety measures in place before the accident and whether employees received proper forklift training.

The plastics company has received prior OSHA violations, but they were minor. They were fined almost $400, but they have also challenged OSHA's findings. OSHA cited them for seat belt violations and electrical issues. Another worker sustained an ankle injury after falling in 2011, but OSHA declined to issue a citation.

When California workplace accidents of this magnitude occur, it can be a cause of concern for other employees at the company. Now the man's family will have to come to terms with the loss of their loved one, but also the possibility of a loss of a major source of income. Workers' compensation could be available which may assist them with last medical care costs, funeral expenses and other financial burdens the family may have after this tragedy.

Source: ktvu.com, "Worker at Oakland plastics company killed in forklift accident," Nov. 15, 2012

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