A forklift accident at Fuyao Glass America killed an employee around five this morning.
The coroner identified the victim as 57-year-old Ricky Patterson. He was a forklift operator at the Moraine factory.
Authorities say Patterson was manipulating a strap holding glass on his forklift when it fell on him – pinning him between the glass and the forklift.
“He’d gone over, and it appears it took something to cut it. And when he cut it, it released,” Sgt. Mike Keegan of the Moraine Police Department said. “I don’t know if he thought he could hold it with his body weight but it appears it pushed him into the forklift.”
Moraine Police Sgt. Mike Keegan said there is surveillance video of the incident, and officials are reviewing it, to see what went wrong.
“It appears almost 21 hundred pounds is what fell into him,” Keehan said. “It was so fast and the force was so great, there wasn’t much they could do for him.”
According to family, Patterson was the father of five children and had several grandchildren.
He had worked at Fuyao for a little more than a year: since November 2016 – without incident.
They described Patterson as a hardworking man and a good person. They say he made friends easily and loved children.
He lost his mother, last month.
In a statement, Fuyao confirmed state officials from the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) and the Bureau of Workers’ Compensation are investigating what happened.
The full statement reads:
“An incident that occurred during operations this morning at the Fuyao Glass America Inc. Moraine, Ohio plant has resulted in the death of a valued colleague and friend. The hearts and thoughts of Fuyao associates worldwide are with the employee’s family at this difficult time. Out of respect for his family, we will not confirm his identity. The investigation into the cause of this incident is ongoing. We will be working closely alongside the Ohio Bureau of Workers’ Compensation and the Occupational Safety and Health Administration as they investigate. Safety is the top priority at Fuyao and we are committed to providing a safe working environment for each of our valued employees. We have activated our Employee Assistance Program and have responders available to talk and counsel employees as we mourn the passing of our friend. Out of respect for our employees and the family of the deceased we ask for privacy at this time.”
The coroner said the cause of death was blunt force injury to the head and neck.
The coroner ruled the death as an accident.