A Ford worker died Wednesday night at the Lima Engine Plant in Ohio, the Free Press has confirmed.
“Our plant experienced a tragedy that none of us should ever have to encounter. We lost one of our work family last night to an accident in a machine,” wrote Ray Lopinksi in a Facebook post to UAW Local 1219 members obtained by the Free Press. Lopinski is the building chairman.
Patrick Archer, 50, a resident of the Village of Ada, was fatally injured by mechanical equipment at the facility, according to Major Andre McConnahea of the Allen County Sheriff’s Office.
The Sheriff’s office was contacted at 7:06 p.m. Wednesday regarding the workplace accident at Ford, he said. The situation is under investigation, he said.
Chaplains have been set up for grief counseling for those coping with the loss of a union brother.
He was a mechanical repairman.
“As we struggle with many questions, rest assured we will do everything needed to understand this terrible incident, to ensure the proper corrective actions are undertaken moving forward,” Lopinski wrote. “We will be having a moment of silence later today to pay our respects and reflect on what really matters in our lives.”
He ended the post with, “Please continue to be vigilant and be each other’s keeper.”
In response to the news, UAW Vice President Chuck Browning, director of the UAW Ford Department, said in a statement Thursday he is “heartbroken and devastated” and the union extends condolences to the family of the deceased and his union brothers and sisters in Ohio.
Browning asked union members to “rededicate themselves to safety and well-being of one another” in the workplace.
“We honor our fallen brother with gratitude for his life and mourn his loss,” Browning said.
Safety a priority
Kelli Felker, Ford global manufacturing and labor communications manager, issued a statement Thursday that said, “We are saddened that a Lima Engine Plant employee died last night as a result of injuries sustained in a workplace accident. We offer our sincerest condolences to his family, friends and colleagues. The safety and security of everyone in our facility is our highest priority.”
Ford said it is investigating how the accident occurred.
This article originally appeared on Detroit Free Press: Lima, Ohio Ford engine plant worker dies in machine accident