June 20, 2022 | Susan Napier-Sewell

New Worker “Melts in Half” at Foundry Job


On his fifth day at work at an iron-melting factory, the Caterpillar Mapleton Foundry, 39-year-old Steven Dierks was working near a crucible and tripped, losing his life as he fell halfway into a molten vat.

Deputies from Peoria County in Illinois were called to the scene at the Foundry in Mapleton at approximately 10:00 am on June 2 and found Dierks partially submerged in the 2,600 degrees Fahrenheit vat of molten iron. Chris Watkins, Peoria County Sheriff’s Office Captain, categorized the occurrence as an “occupational accident.”

The coroner, Jamie Hawkins, declared that while there was no foul play, Dierks’ death would be investigated by the sheriff’s office and the occupational safety and health administration, as reported by the Peoria Journal Star.

A worker, speaking on the condition of remaining anonymous, stated “He was taking a sample of iron for the met lab and apparently just tripped,” according to Yahoo News. Yahoo also reported that a coworker commented on social media that Dierks “did not have ‘sufficient training’ to be on the iron floor.”

The Ottawa Sun potentially widened the scope of worker endangerment at the Foundry in its report of a December 2021 fatality, when electrical contractor Scott Adams, 50, also died after falling about six meters while climbing a ladder.

Image source: Pixabay, Image by photochur from Pixabay.

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