Man dies after falling 20-feet from forklift

Posted at 12:40 PM, Oct 24, 2016
and last updated 2016-10-24 12:40:33-04

A worker at an Ionia County fruit storage facility died when he was attempting to change a light bulb, falling 20-feet, the Ionia County Sheriff’s Office says.

The accident happened just after 8 a.m. Saturday morning, when the sheriff’s office says Arturo “Sam” Medina, 62, of Gowen was attempting to change a light bulb in one of the Belding Fruit Storage facility’s large fruit cooling rooms.

The department says Medina was inside of an apple crate and a co-worker had raised him up with a forklift to a height of approximately 20-feet. The bottom of the crate was rotted, and gave way allowing the apple crate to tip over and eject Medina.

Medina was reportedly not wearing a safety harness or hard hat. He sustained fatal injuries from the fall, the sheriff’s office says.

According to the Ionia County Sheriff’s Office Facebook, Medina was a 38-year employee of the facility.

Ionia County Sheriff’s Office Victim Advocates responded to the scene to assist with co-workers and family with their grieving. For Monday, the Victim Advocates and management personal from Belding Fruit Storage are making arrangements to have grief counselling services available for all employees.

The Michigan Occupational Safety and Health Administration was called in, and as of Monday, they are still investigating the situation.