Sunday 22 October 2017

Father crushed to death by 40 tonnes of cheese

The jury returned a verdict of industrial accident and recommended forklift training be provided to all operators. (Stock photo)
The jury returned a verdict of industrial accident and recommended forklift training be provided to all operators. (Stock photo)

Louise Roseingrave

A young father was killed after he was crushed beneath 40 tonnes of cheese in a workplace accident.

Robert Ceremuga (32), from Littlepace View, Clonee, Dublin 15, suffered catastrophic crush injuries when a shelf rack collapsed at a cold storage warehouse where he worked at VP Foods, Jamestown Business Park, Finglas, Dublin 11.

He died on November 28, 2013, after the shelf rack he was standing next to became unstable and collapsed, an inquest into his death at Dublin Coroner's Court heard.

A forklift driver was working in the storeroom and had removed between 30 and 40 pallets of cheese from the lower shelves on the morning of November 28, 2013. The driver had only been working for the company for a number of weeks and had no formal forklift training, Health and Safety inspector Frank Kerins said.

He was sitting in the forklift when Mr Ceremuga entered the cold store with a clipboard.

"The whole thing started to sway and the pallets started coming down...it was all top heavy, once it buckled, it was not able to take the weight," Mr Kerins said.

The court was told Mr Ceremuga had no time to react.

The jury returned a verdict of industrial accident and recommended forklift training be provided to all operators.

The man's daughter was just four months old when he died. In a statement through her solicitor, Kieran Johnston, his wife Maria said: "She was his pride and joy. I lost my best friend and my entire world. I think about him every day."

Irish Independent

Editor's Choice

Also in Irish News