Supervisor Dies When Struck by Falling Clothing Bales

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Type:  Safety Bulletin/Alert

Publisher:  Washington State Department of Labor & Industries, Olympia, WA

Published As:  Public


Topics:  Occupational Safety and Health, Material Handling/Storage

A supervisor at a used clothing processing facility died when she was struck by falling bales of used clothing. On the day of the incident, a forklift operator was stacking bales of used clothing in a storage area against beside other stacks of bales. As the victim was walking by the new bales that were stacked six high, four bales fell from the top of the stack knocking her to the floor. The bales weighed from 500 to 780 pounds each. The hazard of bales falling from stacks had not been addressed by the employer. They had not perceived it as a safety hazard because it had not been observed by or reported by employees to management, nor had employees raised this as a concern.

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