Alvin Gerk, 30, suffered fatal injuries in a Costa Mesa industrial accident on December 24, 2008, the Huntington Beach Independent reports. Gerk was found dead underneath a pickup outside of his place of business, AG Mobile, a service company for industrial trucks. According to officials from the California Division of Occupational Safety and Health (Cal/OSHA), Gerk was underneath a truck trying to put the transmission in gear when it rolled on top of him.
Cal/OSHA officials are saying that this on-the-job injury may have been prevented if Gerk had applied the parking brake. Both Cal/OSHA and the Orange County Coroner are apparently investigating this fatal Costa Mesa on-the-job accident.
My heart goes out to the family of Alvin Gerk for their tragic loss. Please keep them in your prayers.
According to Cal/OSHA’s 2005 statistics, a total of 453 people were killed in industrial accidents. Out of these fatalities, 38 were workers struck by a vehicle or other mobile equipment.
It is not very clear from this newspaper report, whether Alvin Gerk was working at AG Mobile or whether he owned the business. As an employee Gerk would likely be covered under workers compensation. However, his family should consider retaining the services of a reputed Orange County on-the-job injury attorney to look carefully into investigation reports and determine who or what caused this accident. In workers compensation cases, a “third party claim” is usually worth a lot more to the injured victims or their families than the workers compensation benefits they are entitled to. California workers compensation benefits are extremely inadequate and hardly sufficient to compensate families for the loss of a loved one, not to mention their primary breadwinner.
A skilled personal injury lawyer who is experienced in handling product defect cases will have an expert carefully examine the truck for any mechanical malfunctions or product defects, especially the brakes. If it is determined that this accident was caused by a defective auto product, then the product manufacturer could be held liable.