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Worker crushed to death in 1.5-tonne generator accident

Forklift operator and site engineer accused of causing worker’s accidental death, 2 others injured

Gulf News

Dubai: A forklift operator and a site engineer have been accused of accidentally causing the death of a worker, who died after a 1.5-tonne generator fell on him.

The 42-year-old Indian engineer was said to have instructed the 35-year-old Pakistani operator to use the forklift to move the giant-sized generator from one spot to another at a site where a school was being constructed in June 2016.

Three workers, two Indians and a Bangladeshi, were believed to have placed several iron pipes underneath the generator, according to records, to help support the generator and to tug it to another spot.

Despite having been warned about the dangers of shifting the heavy-machine with the forklift, the engineer instructed the operator to lift up the generator to tug it.

Due to its weight, the machine outweighed the forklift, flipped on its front side and fell on the three workers, who were standing in the front, said records.

The engineer instantly called up an ambulance and police were summoned to the site in Al Barsha area.

The three workers were rushed to the nearest hospital where one of them was pronounced dead and two others were injured critically in their heads and chests.

Onsite police interrogations revealed that the Pakistani operator and the Indian engineer were responsible for the accident.

Prosecutors charged the two suspects of negligently and accidentally being responsible for a worker’s death and the injury of two others.

According to the accusation sheet, prosecutors said the suspects failed to carry out their job’s properly, professionally and safely and failed to adhere to applying precautionary and safety measures at the construction site.

The suspects failed to prepare and carry out a proper and safe plan while shifting the generator from one spot to another and that they had breached the safety standards when they used the forklift to move the heavy machine, said records.

Records said the suspects were liable for the worker’s death and the two workers’ injuries as they had failed to estimate the potential dangers of allowing the victims to be present during what prosecutors described as an ‘unsecure and unsafe’ operation to tug the generator.

The suspects pleaded not guilty when they appeared before the Dubai Misdemeanours Court and denied any wrongdoing.

The trial continues.