Wednesday, April 10, 2002

Tire explosion critically injures Batavia trucker

By Jennifer Edwards,
The Cincinnati Enquirer

        FAIRFIELD — A Batavia man was critically injured Tuesday when a truck tire exploded in his face as he filled it with air inside a small trucking company.

[photo] Fairfield rescue workers move Daniel Alley of Batavia to a helicopter after Mr. Alley was critically injured at a trucking company in Fairfield on Tuesday.
(Michael Snyder photo)
| ZOOM |
        Daniel Alley, 36, suffered serious head injuries, including a broken lower jaw and skull, Fire Chief Dan Bennett said. He was taken by helicopter to University Hospital and was listed in critical condition.

        Firefighters responded to William Pott & Son Inc., 3385 Port Union Road, at 11:37 a.m. and found Mr. Alley sitting on the floor of the business, struggling to breathe.

        Mr. Alley had not put the tire inside a protective cage, designed to prevent such injuries, before inflating it, Chief Bennett said.

        “He was working with the tire lying flat on the garage floor and was in the process of filling it,” Chief Bennett said.

        Mr. Alley is an independent contractor who owns his rig but drives for the company, said Carol Potter, one of the business' owners. She said she didn't know why Mr. Alley didn't use the cage.

        “All he said was, "Can I back in, I need to work on my tires,'” Ms. Potter recalled. “They know to use the cage. It was 10 feet in front of him.”

        She said she heard the explosion, ran to Mr. Alley's aid and called the Fire Department.

        “He is very dependable. He's a very nice guy,” she said.

        William M. Murphy, area director with the Occupational Safety and Health Administration's Cincinnati office, said the agency is investigating.

        “We do have a specific OSHA standard that requires those large tires to be in a cage when they are being inflated,” Mr. Murphy said. “We'll look at the reasons for not putting the tire in a cage, but there could be a violation of that standard.”


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