SAN FRANCISCO (CBS SF) — Two men connected to a San Francisco-based lumber supply company have been charged with involuntary manslaughter for the 2016 death of an employee who died after being crushed by a forklift, the city’s District Attorney’s Office announced Tuesday.
Hua Quing Ruan, 60, died on Nov. 21, 2016 at Good View Roofing and Building Supply Corporation, located at 1320 Marin St., after a forklift overturned on a ramp and he became pinned underneath.
Good View Roofing and Building Supply Corporation’s owner, Alfred Lee, 65, and the company’s manager, Alan Chan, 44, turned themselves in to police Friday and have been released from custody on $50,000 bail each. The pair will each be arraigned on the involuntary manslaughter charge and three labor code violations on June 5, prosecutors said.
According to court documents, Lee and Chan allegedly violated workplace safety procedures that led to Ruan’s death by failing to install a curb on the ramp from where the forklift fell, in accordance with the California Department of Occupational Safety and Health regulations.
The incident was captured on video and reportedly shows that the forklift’s tire drove off the ramp, causing it tilt over. Ruan allegedly tried to jump out of the way but was crushed when the entire forklift tipped over.
“When employers take workplace safety shortcuts it’s employees that suffer,” District Attorney George Gascon said in a statement.
“Life is far too precious to dispense with fundamental safety requirements,” he said.
Immediately after the incident, Cal/OSHA said it was investigating along with police.
The San Francisco medical examiner’s office had initially identified the victim as 58-year-old Ruan Quiang of South San Francisco.
According to the District Attorney’ Office, since 2011, all prosecutions involving Cal/OSHA workplace deaths have occurred at non-unionized worksites. Additionally, Cal/OSHA complaints.
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