Forklift Roundup: Drug Busts, Water Rescues and Robots

(Courtesy: Dave M.V.)

(Courtesy: Dave M.V.)

Forklifts were in the news a lot this week. Here are a few of the top stories:

  • Daring Water Rescue — In Baton Rouge, Louisiana, a man used a forklift to rescue a family that had been trapped in their car by rushing flood waters. The hero, David Dunham, said he and a friend noticed a woman and her children standing on the roof of her car which was surrounded by water. He jumped into his forklift, drove through the water, and carried the family to safety.
  • Killer Forklift — A Kentucky man was killed by his own forklift after it ran him over while he was attempting to jump start it. The incident occurred Saturday, June 27, in McCracken County. Doris Lee Simmons, 87, apparently was standing between the front and rear tires of the vehicle with the vehicle in gear. When the engine caught a charge, he apparently was unable to jump out of the way in time and was run over. A neighbor found Simmons lying on the ground hear the forklift, which was in gear and resting against the barn wall with the wheels still spinning.
  • Robot Forklift Takes Top Honors — A team of engineering students in the UK took home the top prize at the annual Manufacturing Team Challenge after they designed and built a forklift that could be operated by remote control. The team will now move on to the international competition, which will be held Augusts 11 through 16 in Sao Paulo, Brazil.
  • Forklift Death Mystery — Investigators in Granite Falls, North Carolina, are hoping surveillance video can explain how a 55-year-old lumber company worker was killed by a forklift on Monday, June 29. Steven George Doglas, a forklift operator, was found beneath the wheels of his vehicle. He was working alone and there no witnesses to the accident, so it’s not immediately known how the accident happened.
  • Forklift Repairman May Lose Both Arms — A worker at a Florida company could lose both of his arms as the result of a forklift accident. The incident occurred  Thursday, June 18, at the Flotech facility in Jacksonville. The worker apparently was trying to repair a forklift when another part of the forklift unexpectedly came down and severely injured both of his arms.
  • Forklift Seized in Drug Bust — In Melbourne, Australia, police seized a forklift, excavators and weapons during early morning raids on 11 separate properties.  The seizures were the result of an ongoing drug investigation in four different municipalities. A total of 11 people — nine men and two women — were arrested during the raids, which were launched at 5 a.m. local time on Wednesday, July 1. Cash and drugs — including GHB, a narcotic sedative — also were seized.

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