26-ton machine crushed worker at Walther Engineering and Manufacturing, coroner says

OHSA: Load came off forklift
Posted at 5:41 PM, Aug 22, 2017
and last updated 2017-08-23 18:04:45-04

FRANKLIN, Ohio – A 26-ton machine crushed a Lebanon man in an industrial accident at Walther Engineering and Manufacturing Company on Tuesday, according to the Warren County Coroner’s Office. 

Douglas Mescher's death was ruled an accident, the coroner's office said.

An OSHA spokesperson told WCPO that a load came off a forklift and crushed Mescher.

Mescher worked for SK Rigging Co., which was contracted by Walther to move a machine, according to OHSA spokesperson Scott Allen said. OHSA's investigation could take up to six months, Allen said.

OSHA cited Walther, which makes vehicle parts, for nine violations in 2010, records show. Six "serious" violations included storage systems not secured, machine guarding not provided to protect operators from hazards created by rotating equipment, and machines designed to be fixed not anchored. The company was fined $6,773.

SK Rigging has one OHSA violation from 2000. Records are not available.

A Walther official said the company would make no comment about Mescher's death.