Laborer Killed at Tel Aviv Airport, Bringing Total to 42 Work-related Deaths in 2019

Workers hotline calls on police to investigate deaths: 'As long as no one is held accountable, workers will continue to be killed'

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The scene of the accident, June 23, 2019.
The scene of the accident, June 23, 2019.Credit: Hatzalah Petach Tikva Spokesperson

One worker was killed and another one was seriously injured at Ben-Gurion International Airport after a forklift belonging to a cargo company fell off of a lifting mechanism and struck the two of them, the police said.

According to the Coalition Against Construction and Industrial Accidents, this was the 42nd death in a work-related accident this year. Last year, there were 30 such deaths during the comparable time period. Paramedics declared the first worker dead at the site, while the injured worker was evacuated to Sheba Medical Center at Tel Hashomer in serious condition.

>> Read more: Why Israel isn't doing more to prevent construction workers' deaths | Analysis ■ Israel’s construction accidents: Not mishaps, but negligence  | Editorial

Hadas Tagari, the director of the coalition, noted that casualties on the job were rising for the second year in a row and called on the Histadrut labor federation to make worker safety a top priority by establishing a special department and investing resources into promoting it.

The Kav La’oved workers hotline lamented that the police’s Peles Unit, which was founded earlier this year specifically to investigate workplace accidents, was not living up to its expectations.

“Based on the information we have and which it has publicized, to date only three work accidents have been investigated,” it said. “The unit must fulfill the purpose for which it was established and conduct investigations that will result in legal proceedings, which do not actually occur. As long as no one is held accountable, workers will continue to be killed.”