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Trash Collector Dies After Falling Underneath Truck in Methuen

A trash collector has died after falling off the back of a trash truck and was run over by the vehicle in Methuen. On the morning of July 12, Keimani Bell, 28, from Dorchester, was working for F.W. Russell & Sons of Somerville, when he grabbed a trash bag from the street, lost his footing off the back of the truck, and fell underneath the vehicle. The truck was backing up at the time of his fall and Bell was subsequently run over. Spokesman for District Attorney Jonathan Blodgett, Steve O’Connell, confirmed that the worker was pronounced deceased at the scene of the work-related accident shortly before 11:30 a.m. O’Connell said the Bell “slipped off the back of the truck as it was going in reverse.”

John Mariano, a witness who lives on the street, commented that he saw the worker at the rear of the truck grab a trash bag off the street, lose his footing, and then fall backwards underneath the trash vehicle. Mariano said, “The worst part was when I saw him roll under the truck … The driver didn’t know he was under the truck. If he had known he was there, he would have stopped.”

The company has provided trash collection services in Methuen for the past six years. O’Connell said there was no indication that the accident was in any way intentional and that no charges have been filed. The name of the trash removal vehicle driver has not yet been released. The city’s public works director, Raymond DiFiore, who oversees the city’s trash collection, commented that he could not remember any accidents involving F.W. Russell & Sons trash trucks in the past six years since they had been employed by the city.

The accident is being thoroughly investigated by local police and state troopers who specialties are accident reconstruction and truck safety, in addition to troopers from District Attorney Blodgett’s office. The Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) is also investigating the accident to determine whether or not workplace safety standards were violated.

If you or your loved one has been injured in the workplace, it is advised that you contact an experienced Massachusetts workers’ compensation lawyer.

Sources:

Trash collector dies after being run over by truck in Methuen , The Boston Globe, Eagle Tribune, July 13, 2011
Trash collector dies after fall from truck, The Boston Globe, July 14, 2011
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Contact a Massachusetts work injury lawyer if you have been injured in the workplace.

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