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ACCIDENT

Fatal workplace mishaps claim two lives

Two workers died on the job in Sweden on Wednesday in two separate accidents involving cranes, less than a week after two workers died after drowning in coal tar at a coke plant.

Fatal workplace mishaps claim two lives

In one accident, a 63-year-old crane operator died after a ten-metre long post came loose and hit him in the head. The accident took place near the Rörvik dock on the island of Orust off Sweden’s west coast.

Workers were operating a crane on a barge located several metres from shore in an effort to secure the posts into the seabed. For some unknown reason, one of the posts fell from the crane, striking the 63-year-old. He was rushed to Norra Älvsborgs hospital where he later died from his injuries.

The second accident took place in central Malmö. Two workers were up in a bucket lift stringing up Christmas lights on lamp posts when their truck was struck by another truck.

One worker, a 64-year-old man, fell several metres to the ground, while his colleague managed to remain dangling in the bucket. Witnesses reported seeing the man lying bloodied on the ground as ambulance workers tried to revive him.

He was taken to hospital, but doctors were unable to save him.

The truck that struck the crane was driven by a student driver in upper secondary school who was accompanied by an instructor, the Sydsvenskan newspaper reported.

While no one is currently suspected of committing any crime in connection with the accident in Malmö, two police reports were filed, one for a workplace accident and the other for a traffic violation.

The two deaths come just days after two workers died at a coke plant in northern Sweden after drowning in coal tar that spilled out of a tank during routine maintenance. The incident, which took place at a facility operated by steel-maker SSAB, sparked anger from unions about lax workplace safety.

“It is completely unacceptable that there are such shortcomings in the working environment that people die on the job,” IF Metall spokesman Anders Ferbe told the TT news agency at the time.

TT/The Local/dl

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ACCIDENT

Grounded Finland ferry refloated and heading back to port

UPDATE: A ferry that ran aground next to islands between Finland and Sweden with nearly 430 crew and passengers on board, was refloated and heading for port, its owners said Sunday.

Grounded Finland ferry refloated and heading back to port
The Viking Line ship Grace hit rocks in in the Aland archipelago. Photo AFP

The Viking Line's “Grace” hit rocks on Saturday afternoon while sailing between the Finnish port of Turku and the Swedish capital Stockholm, shortly before a stopover in Mariehamn, in the Aland archipelago, Finland's coast guard said.

The passengers had to spend the night on board, though there was no immediate danger as it was not taking on water. No one was hurt in the incident.

A tug boat helped refloat the ferry in the small hours of Sunday morning, the coast guard said on Twitter.

After disembarking around 260 passengers at Mariehamn, it went on to its home port of Turku in Finland, a Viking Line spokeswoman told AFP Sunday. It would undergo repairs in the coming days, she added.

Although the cause of the accident has yet to be established, the coast guard said there were strong winds in the area at the time.

The company cancelled its Saturday ferry service, which was to have been taken by a smaller vessel, because of a storm warning.

In September, another Viking Line ferry, the Amorella, ran aground on the same Aaland Island and the passengers had to be evacuated.

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