Chinese and Palestinian Die in Two Work Accidents in Southern, Central Israel

This brings the death toll in work-related accidents to 41 just this year

Scene of accident in Ashkelon, Israel, June 17, 2019.
Police Spokesperson's Office

Two people died in separate work accidents on Monday, raising the total of work deaths in Israel this year to 41.

A 31-year-old Palestinian mechanic from the West Bank was crushed to death while fixing a tractor at Moshav Arugot in central Israel. The police are investigating the incident and the Labor Ministry has been informed of the death of Jibreel Mohammed al-Halis, resident of the West Bank town of Yata.

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“They told us he was a mechanic who came to fix a tractor and the bucket tractor fell on him for some reason,” said Tom Elnadiv, a medic from the United Hatzalah rescue service. 

>> Read more: Despite spike in fatal work accidents, Israeli police reluctant to investigate ■ Israel’s construction accidents: Not mishaps, but negligence  | Editorial

Earlier in the day, a Chinese worker in his 30s was killed when he fell while unloading coal from a ship anchored near the coast of the southern Israeli city of Ashkelon.

Emergency responders said that by the time they had arrived, the laborer was already dead. Preliminary information indicates the incident occurred on a foreign ship from Gibraltar operating in Israel’s territorial waters, according to the Labor, Social Affairs and Social Services Ministry.

Hadas Tagari, who heads an organization that combats work accidents, said that for the second year in a row, the number of deaths in work accidents continues to climb. 

On Sunday, a 44-year-old worker was killed when a truck overturned near a construction site north of Haifa. The truck had been parked on sand and overturned when the driver tried to shake a concrete pump arm which was extended perpendicularly to the truck. The pipe hit the worker in the head, killing him. A preliminary investigation reveals that the construction site had been ordered closed for safety reasons in January.