Archive for category fatalities

In Memorial to Washington State Truck Drivers Who Died at Work in 2020

Image of multiple candles.

We at Keeptruckingsafe.org send our deepest condolences to the family and friends of the truck drivers we lost in 2020. We believe every worker deserves to go home safe each night. It is never easy to find the right words to talk about losing members of our community. These drivers gave their all to provide for their families and to transport the goods that keep America strong. We truly appreciate and respect the hard work trucking professionals do each day. We hope that by keeping safety as part of the daily conversation, we can contribute to the end of trucking related deaths in Washington State.

Below we have listed each truck driver in order of date of death. If we could find an obituary, it is included. Please use the comments to pay your respects to these drivers. We did our best to include obituaries, but were unable to find some. If you are aware of any we missed, add them to the comments.

Gone too soon are:

Ivan Cardenas, 34, Log Truck Driver

Died: June 29, 2020

Mr. Cardenas was driving his log truck on a forest service road when he lost control on a corner and the truck left the road and rolled over.

Obituary

Daniel Armstrong, 63, Truck Driver

Died: July 27, 2020

Mr. Armstrong was a truck driver for an electrical utilities company when he passed away in the parking lot of his employer.

Rodney Petroff, 64, Truck Driver

Died: August 3, 2020

Mr. Petroff died when his tow truck was struck by a semi-truck when he attempted to make a U-turn on a state highway.

Obituary

Thank you to Randy Clark and the Washington State Fatality Assessment and Control Evaluation (FACE) Program for providing the data.

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L&I’s FACE Program Releases Work-Related Fatalities Report for 2018

The Fatality Assessment and Control Evaluation (FACE) program recently released their Work-Related Fatalities Report for 2018. In 2018, 76 workers died on the job in traumatic incidents. The industry with the highest fatalities was Transportation and Warehousing with 13 fatalities. In this industry, 6 heavy and tractor-trailer truck drivers died on the job, 10 fewer than in 2017. The report describes the incidents and provides resources to prevent other similar tragedies.

FACE is part of the Safety and Health Assessment and Research for Prevention (SHARP) program within the Washington State Department of Labor & Industries. FACE tracks, investigates, and distributes information about work-related fatal injuries in many industries, including trucking.

In Memory and Honor

The Washington State Department of Labor & Industries held its Worker Memorial Day ceremony on April 25th to remember the workers who died in 2018 from job-related injuries or illnesses. Each year the agency invites the families of the fallen to attend the event, which includes comments from Gov. Inslee and other speakers, a reading of the workers’ names, and the ringing of the memorial bell in L&I’s Worker Memorial Garden. This year’s ceremony entered 91 names into the Worker Memorial book, which is on permanent display in the agency’s headquarters’ in Tumwater.

At Keep Trucking Safe, we honor those truck drivers who worked tirelessly to better the lives of their families and our community but tragically died as a result of doing their job. We remember the following truck drivers whose names were called among the fallen workers honored this year:

Nicholas J. Margeson, 38, Truck Driver

Died: May 10, 2018

Mr. Margeson was hauling two flatbed trailers loaded with rolls of grass turf when his rig left a state roadway and rolled over into a ditch.

Obituary

Scott R. Tryon, 54, Log Truck Driver

Died: September 18, 2017

Mr. Tryon was driving his truck when he came across trees and branches that were blocking the road. He used a chain saw and ax to clear the road. He got in his truck and slowly drove off the road. He died of a heart attack attributed to unusual exertion.

Obituary

Richard Sedy, 66, Log Truck Driver

Died: December 28, 2018

Mr. Sedy was driving a dump truck belonging to his own trucking company along a county road when the truck left the road and hit a tree.

Obituary

Ducas Aucoin, 59, Truck Driver

Died: May 14, 2018

Mr. Aucoin was using a forklift to unload a delivery of manufactured stone blocks from his truck to a new construction residence. The truck was parked on a steep angle street and as he was unloading the forklift rolled on its side, crushing him.

Obituary

Please add your remembrances in the comments. We have tried to find obituaries or news articles for all, but if you know of any we missed please add those too.

Thank you to Randy Clark and the Washington State Fatality Assessment and Control Evaluation (FACE) Program for providing the data.

Levelling Dock Plate Injuries

Securing trucks at the dock can cause injuries to muscles, tendons, and joints while lifting and moving the mechanical dock plate into position. Switching to a push button controlled powered dock leveler removes the need to pull or manipulate heavy dock components. Powered dock levelers can also smooth out forklift travel between dock and trailer, reducing vibrations to the driver’s body. This type of system can also help prevent a fall from the dock while docking or closing a trailer.

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In Memoriam

Last month we recognized Worker Memorial Day, this month we’d like to acknowledge that a good portion of the workers lost in 2017 were truck drivers. In fact 15 truck drivers died on the job last year. That is 2 more than 2016. We are working to prevent this trend from continuing. By: Jena Cole

Last month we recognized Worker Memorial Day, this month we’d like to acknowledge that a good portion of the workers lost in 2017 were truck drivers. In fact 15 truck drivers died on the job last year. That is 2 more than 2016. We are working to prevent this trend from continuing.

Every driver needs to return home safe at the end of the day. We at TIRES will continue to work with industry leaders to develop safety training to get us there.

Drivers, we appreciate you and want you to stay safe.

Together we can prevent work-related deaths in trucking.

 

Drivers we lost:

Stephen Poch, 66, Truck Driver

Died: February 1, 2017

Mr. Poch was standing on top of a tanker oil truck to check its level while loading when he tripped and fell 8 feet.

 

Timothy Koelzer, 62, Truck Driver

Died: March 1, 2017

Mr. Koelzer was unhooking a lowboy trailer when the trailer fell on him.

http://www.legacy.com/obituaries/tricityherald/obituary.aspx?n=timothy-james-koelzer&pid=184387957&fhid=2302

 

Freddy Shoenbachler, 62, Truck Driver

Died: March 27, 2017

Mr. Shoenbachler, a truck driver at a metal recycling plant, was drilling a hole in a natural gas cylinder that was on top of a bus. The tank rapidly depressurized once the drill bit penetrated the cylinder, resulting in him being thrown 20 feet off the bus.

http://www.legacy.com/obituaries/tribnet/obituary.aspx?n=freddy-schoenbachler&pid=185029314

 

Bradley Donovan, 46, Truck Driver

Died May 11, 2017

Mr. Donovan, a semi-truck driver was driving a truck along an interstate highway when he braked for traffic his truck rear-ended another truck and then swerved and hit a Jersey barrier.

http://www.thenewstribune.com/news/local/article150310697.html

 

Miguel Penado, 58, Truck Driver

Died: May 15, 2017

Mr. Penado, a truck driver employed by a moving company, was driving a semi-truck carrying a load of cardboard boxes along a state highway when the truck left the roadway and crashed into a power pole.

http://www.ifiberone.com/news/quincy-man-killed-in-semi-truck-crash-on-sr-near/article_47683b3a-39ef-11e7-aade-c78998f9adb1.html

 

Steven Osburn, 60, Truck Driver

Died: July 6, 2017

Mr. Osburn was driving a semi-truck and trailer along a state highway when a box truck veered across the centerline and struck his vehicle. Both drivers died at the scene.

http://lmtribune.com/obituaries/steven-g-osburn/article_4ccf30cf-dd4d-5a51-98a1-fb05f5cd567e.html

 

Kenneth Fennix, 25, Truck Driver

Died: July 6, 2017

Mr. Fennix was driving a box truck along a state highway when his vehicle veered across the centerline and struck a semi-truck. Both drivers died at the scene

https://www.yakimaherald.com/obituaries/kenneth-wayne-fennix/article_1cf5c0f2-6677-11e7-a14f-eb59cb9206d1.html

 

Edward Hedrick, 57, Truck Driver

Died: July 17, 2017

Mr. Hedrick was exiting the cab of his truck which was parked in his employer’s truck yard when he slipped or tripped, hitting his head on the truck’s steps.

https://www.legacy.com/obituaries/name/edward-hedrick-obituary?pid=186153430&view=guestbook

 

Tyler Hardy, 26, Truck Driver

Died: October 23, 2017

Mr. Hardy was driving along a county road when he lost control of his truck, which then left the road and rolled over.

http://www.legacy.com/obituaries/bellinghamherald/obituary.aspx?n=tyler-hardy&pid=187059214&fhid=9049

 

Garrett Raphael, 26, Truck Driver

Died October 24, 2017

Mr. Raphael was crushed by the box van he was driving when he stepped out of the van and the van rolled forward, pinning him against the wall of a building.

http://komonews.com/news/local/federal-way-man-dies-after-pinned-between-van-and-storage-unit

 

Aaron Cochran, 44, Log Truck Driver

Died: October 31, 2017

Mr. Cochran lost control of his fully loaded log truck on a curve of a state highway.

http://www.legacy.com/obituaries/peninsuladailynews/obituary.aspx?n=aaron-cochran&pid=187196363

 

Cheryl Wrona, 61, Truck Driver

Died: November 27, 2017

Ms. Wrona, a truck driver at a hay farm, was pinned between hay bales and the back of a freight container being loaded.

https://www.legacy.com/obituaries/kvnews/obituary-print.aspx?n=cheryl-mae-wrona&pid=187632175

 

Thomas Phelps, 51, Truck Driver

Died: November 29, 2017

Mr. Phelps was employed by a compost business where he drove a truck. He died by suicide at his place of employment.

https://www.kitsapdailynews.com/obituaries/thomas-loren-phelps/

 

John Gonzalez, 54, Truck Driver

Died: December 18, 2017

Mr. Gonzalez was driving his semi-truck on an interstate highway when he lost control of his truck on a corner and crashed into a concrete pylon.

https://www.frymemorialchapel.com/tributes/John-Gonzalez

 

 

Please add your remembrances in the comments. We have tried to find obituaries or news articles for all, but if you know of any we missed please add those too.

Thank you to Randy Clark and the Washington State Fatality Assessment and Control Evaluation (FACE) Program for providing the data.

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Trailer Collapses Causing Fatal Head Trauma

By Ace Guerra

asthenia-therapia-egefalos[1]On March 1st of 2017, a Burbank man named Timothy James Koelzer died at the age of 62.  Koelzer died while working underneath on the linkages between two trailers of a long-haul truck when it collapsed on him causing trauma to the head. Such a sad tragedy and we would like to offer our heartfelt condolences to all his friends and family during this sad time.

In Memoriam

memoriam

Four truck drivers died while on the job in Washington State during 2015.

We at Keeptruckingsafe.org send our deepest condolences to the family and friends of the truckers we lost in 2015. We believe every worker deserves to go home safe each night.  It is always hard to find the right words to talk about losing members of our community. These men and women worked to provide for their families and transport the goods that keep America strong. We truly appreciate and respect the hard work trucking professionals do each day. We hope that by keeping safety as part of the daily conversation, we can contribute to the end of trucking-related deaths in Washington State.

Below we have listed each truck driver in order of date of death. If we could find an obituary, it is included. Please use the comments to pay your respects to these drivers or drivers you know that have died on the job.

Gone too soon are:

Joseph Haunreiter, 83, Log Truck Driver

Died: June 26, 2015

Mr. Haunreiter died when his log truck left a state highway and crashed.

http://www.cattermolefh.com/notices/Joseph-Haunreiter

Katherine Jones, 53, Truck Driver

Died: July 15, 2015

Ms. Jones was crossing an interstate highway on-foot attempting to assist the occupants of a vehicle involved in a crash, when she was stuck by a passing motor vehicle.

http://www.memorialobituaries.com/memorials/memorials.cgi?action=Obit&memid=215073&clientid=flint

Trevor Bennett, 22, Truck Driver

Died: August 18, 2015

Mr. Bennett died when his semi-truck left a roadway and crashed.

http://www.bruningfuneralhome.com/fh/obituaries/obituary.cfm?o_id=3283234&fh_id=13165

Ross Johnson, 56. Truck Driver

Died: October, 13, 2015

Mr. Johnson was walking across a truck yard at night when he was struck by a yard hostler.

 

Thank you to Randy Clark and the Washington State Fatality Assessment and Control Evaluation (FACE) Program for providing the data.

Truck driver passed away after being struck by yard tractor

Ross Johnson, a truck driver from Gig Harbor, died on October 13, 2015, from injuries received the day before when he was struck by a yard tractor while working for Old Dominion Freight Lines Inc.  Washington’s Division of Occupational Safety and Health is investigating the incident, so we are still waiting to hear the details.

In honor of Mr. Johnson, please take this opportunity to talk with employees about how to prevent run‑over incidents. Provide and mark pedestrian paths to keep foot traffic out of high truck traffic areas.

Here are links to safety training materials to help:  http://keeptruckingsafe.org/struck-by-or-against.html

Our condolences to all the families involved including Old Dominion’s during this sad time.

We were unable to find an obituary to link to but would be glad to have someone add it to the comments below.

Our condolences to the family and friends of Kenneth Burch

By Jena Williams

It’s always sad to hear about the loss of another truck driver. Kenneth Burch was driving a semi-trailer on Interstate 90 when he died of a heart attack. He left the road and struck a private fence.  More information is in the news report: http://www.spokesman.com/stories/2015/aug/18/semi-driver-dies-interstate-90-west-spokane/

Mr. Burch’s obituary: http://www.hodgefuneralhome.com/tribute/details/498/Kenneth_Leslie_Burch/obituary.html

Semi-truck driver killed after exiting her truck on I-90

By Jena Williams

UPDATE: More information from Q13 Fox.

It’s too early to know the details and we may never know the answer to why 53-year-old Katherine Jones attempted to cross Interstate 90 on foot and was hit by another vehicle.

Our thoughts are with her friends, family and co-workers during this difficult time.

Link to the story: http://www.king5.com/story/news/traffic/2015/07/15/car-pedestrian-collision-i90/30192551/