Michael F. McDaniel Jr. killed, Scott M. Spurling seriously injured after they are struck by backhoe while working at a street construction site.

Date: 
Monday, February 3, 2014

A Natick DPW worker has died and another is hospitalized after an accident Tuesday night.

A long-time Natick town employee was killed and a second town employee was injured Tuesday night while both were participating in the emergency repair of a water line, an incident that was witnessed by four co-workers and a Natick police officer on a paid detail, officials said.

A long-time Natick town employee was killed and a second town employee was injured Tuesday night while both were participating in the emergency repair of a water line, an incident that was witnessed by four co-workers and a Natick police officer on a paid detail, officials said.

The Natick Town Administrator said the deceased employee worked for the town’s Department of Public Works for 26 years. Town officials identified him as Michael F. McDaniel Jr., a married father of a nine-year-old girl. McDaniel started his career as a laborer and held the top union job of general foreman at the time of his death.

Town officials identified the second worker as Scott M. Spurling, a DPW foreman who was rushed to Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center, where his condition has been upgraded to stable.

Officals said the incident took place around 7:15 p.m. when six members of the town DPW went to repair a water line break on West Street near the intersection with Redman Drive. She said the crew was working in the street, which led to the deployment of the paid detail.

The incident is under investigation by the State and Natick police and the state workplace safety agency. Officials declined to describe how McDaniel was killed, except to say that it involved equipment being used by the DPW workers.

“It was a routine undertaking,’’ an official said in a telephone interview Wednesday. “It was a freak accident that resulted in the death of one of our employees.”

In a statement, the Middlesex District Attorney office, which is also investigating, said “a backhoe was accidentally pulled forward, and the stabilizer of the backhoe struck two employees who were working in a trench,” fatally injuring the 48-year-old McDaniel.

The fatal incident was followed by Wednesday’s snow storm, and White said that DPW workers who were at the scene were allowed to stay home, an offer most of the workers accepted.

But the rest of the 50-person department had to return to work, supplemented by at least two Natick firefighters and snowplow drivers from surrounding communities sent to help the grief-stricken DPW workers.

People Involved: 
Michael F. McDaniel Jr.
Scott M. Spurling
Roadway: 
West Street
City: 
Natick, MA

Leave a Comment

More reports from our archive:

Date: 
Sunday, January 12, 2014

A member of a utility crew at a roadside construction site died this morning in Madison County when a co-worker accidentally ran over him with a work truck, the State Highway Patrol said.

Thomas Davis, 29, of Quaker City in Guernsey County, was with a crew unloading materials when a coworker, 52-year-old Nick Yurjevich, Jr., didn’t see him and backed over him with the truck he was driving.

Davis died at the scene along Simpson Road, northeast of London. It happened just before 9 a.m.

Date: 
Tuesday, January 28, 2014

A Baylor University stadium construction worker was killed and a co-worker was treated for hypothermia after an accident that plunged both into the Brazos River.

Waco police said the two men were working on a pedestrian bridge over the river on Tuesday. They were pulled into the water when some construction equipment they were harnessed to fell from a floating dock.

Date: 
Thursday, May 1, 2014

Police say a city worker died when a garbage truck hit him in an Orlando church parking lot.

Officials say 26-year-old Brandon Bristol died before 5 a.m. Friday as the garbage truck emptied trash containers.

Orlando police Sgt. Jim Young says 48-year-old driver Reginald Virgil realized his co-worker was no longer on the back of the garbage truck and circled back around. He found Bristol's body.

Young says the death appears to be a "tragic accident."

Investigators are trying to figure out what happened. They say Bristol likely died on impact.

Date: 
Tuesday, February 25, 2014

Three people are dead and three others were injured after a Maui County chartered plane crashed on Lanai Wednesday night.

The incident happened just before 9:30 p.m. about one mile off the airport.

Maui County officials say the deceased were identified as the pilot of the plane and two Department of Planning employees.

Two other planning employees were in critical condition and a deputy attorney for Corporation Counsel was in serious condition.

Date: 
Thursday, March 27, 2014

A Hartsville man died Thursday following a tractor crash on Fox Creek Golf Course near Lydia.

Darlington County Coroner J. Todd Hardee identified the victim as Charles R. Tyner, 51 -- a long-time employee of the golf course.

Tyner died when the tractor he was on overturned, Hardee said.

Following an autopsy Friday Hardee said he ruled the death accidental.

Date: 
Wednesday, January 1, 2014

A massive pile of salt used to clear icy roads has fallen on a worker at a suburban Philadelphia storage facility, crushing and killing him.

Falls Township police say the accident happened Thursday afternoon hours before a massive snowstorm was set to arrive in the area.

The 100-foot-tall pile of salt toppled over and trapped the man, who was working a backhoe. Rescue crews were dispatched but couldn't save him.

Date: 
Tuesday, August 12, 2014

The town office in Hopewell, along with the highway department, was closed Wednesday and will remain closed until Monday as employees mourn the loss of Lee Schutt, 57.
"Lee was a very dedicated and loyal employee. an excellent mechanic," said Town Supervisor Margaret Hilton.

Schutt was driving a town highway pickup truck at the time of Tuesday's crash in Farmington. Deputies said a grain truck swerved to avoid hitting a wheel that fell off of another vehicle when it tipped over and landed on Schutt's truck. He died at the scene.