Wednesday, June 29, 2022
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Horrible as a dad is cut in half by molten iron at a Caterpillar foundry

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Accidents at work can be horrifying and in this case, it happened in front of the man’s colleagues who could not do anything but watch in horror at the death of Steven Dierkes.

He died instantly after being struck by the scorching hot vat of molten iron at the Caterpillar Mapleton Foundry. His body split in half in front of his colleagues.

The father of three died after tripping near a vat of 2,600F (1,427C) iron from which he was collecting a sample.

The incident happened last Thursday and Dierkes, 39, was found with half his body on the factory floor at the Caterpillar Mapleton Foundry in Illinois.

But news reports say no foul play is suspected by the country coroner.

The company said it is deeply saddened by the death of an employee who was involved in a serious incident at the Mapleton, Illinois, facility on March 15th.

“Our hearts go out to this employee’s family, friends, and coworkers. Our top priority is the safety of our employees, contractors, and visitors,” Caterpillar spokeswoman Lisa Miller added.

Other news reports say the worker melted in half after falling into vat of molten iron and the rest of his body fell on the factory floor.

The coroner, Jamie Harwood says he was presumably working alongside a crucible when he fell in.
The Peoria County Coroner’s Office, the Sheriff’s Office, and the Occupational Safety and Health Administration are all looking into Dierkes’ death.

According to a veteran Caterpillar worker who wishes to remain anonymous, Dierkes “was taking a sample of iron for the met lab and apparently just tripped.”

“He died instantly, but not all of him went in,” the unidentified worker explained. A portion of his body was left on the deck for the coroner to recover.

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“It must have been horrifying for those who witnessed it and had to wait for the coroner with half of their coworker on the floor.”

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