A 30-year-old man was killed Thursday in an industrial accident after he was crushed by a large steel pipe, the Merced County Sheriff's Department reported.
Galt resident Benjamin Novoa, 30, was unloading pipes from a flatbed truck around 11 a.m. in the 7000 block of White Rock Road for a drilling operation, according to Deputy Tom MacKenzie, sheriff's spokesman.
The pipes were being off-loaded using straps. A wedge used to keep the remaining pipes in place either broke or came free while Novoa was on the back of the truck. The pipe knocked Novoa off the truck onto the ground, where the pipe rolled off the truck and over Novoa, MacKenzie said.
After Novoa immediately got up, workers told him to lie back down, and his condition began to deteriorate. Medical personnel pronounced him dead at the scene.
The state Division of Occupational Safety and Health is conducting an investigation into the matter, MacKenzie said.