From the Kalamazoo Gazette on November 24, 2008

OTSEGO – A worker at an Otsego company was killed and two other employees were injured Monday in an industrial accident, according to the Otsego Police Department. The incident occurred at about 10:10 a.m. at Mill Assist Services, 141 N. Farmer St.

It appears three workers were trying to remove the end cap from a thick-walled hollow drum roller that is used in paper production. Police stated the workers applied pressure to the inside of the pipe when the cap wouldn’t come off. The end cap unexpectedly gave way and struck one man, killing him. The two other workers were hurt by debris from inside the pipe. Police did not say how severe their injuries were but they sought medical treatment without using an ambulance.

Often times when rushing and frustration take place as we’re having difficulties in doing a task, we forget about the line of fire. We forgot about where the danger lies in the things we’re doing and forget to go through the entire process of what we’re doing to examine all the consequences.

This incident truly brings to light that sometimes when we do something, it will occur (just not like we expected). Pressurizing a vessel to get the end cap off will surely work, only we need to think about how it will come off and where are we when it does.

Today as you’re faced with a task that may be frustrating because you can’t get something to work, take a moment and think about the entire process of what you’re doing. What are the implications of what you’re doing and is there a line of fire?

(Presented with permission from SafetyToolboxTalks)