Construction Worker is Crushed After 6,000 Pounds of Lumber Spills Off Forklift

A construction worker was crushed to death at Florida’s Port Tampa Bay when 6,000 pounds of lumber spilled off a forklift, according to the Hillsborough County Sheriff’s Office.

It happened around 11 a.m. Wednesday, Nov. 16, when the forklift came to a sudden stop, the sheriff’s office said in a news release. The port is in south Tampa, off Hillsborough Bay.

“A person working at the port was helping clear the way for a forklift to transfer two bundles of lumber, weighing 3,000 lbs a piece,” the sheriff’s office said.

“At one point, when the forklift operator hit the brakes, the two bundles rolled forward and off the fork. The first bundle clipped the worker, while the second bundle of lumber rolled over and crushed him.”

The worker was pronounced dead after being taken to Tampa General hospital, officials said. Identities of the worker and forklift driver were not released.

Detectives are calling the incident a workplace accident.

The Occupational Safety and Health Administration is doing a more extensive investigation, officials said.

Port Tampa Bay, the state’s “largest cargo tonnage port,” is undergoing expansions that include “more storage and berth capacity, additional cranes, a new gate complex and trans-loading facilities.”

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