Man crushed by oven behind supermarket - Fox29 WFLX TV, West Palm Beach, FL-news & weather

Man crushed by oven behind supermarket

PALM SPRINGS, FL (WFLX)  Palm Springs Police are still trying to piece together what happened after a man was crushed to death behind a local supermarket. It happened behind the La Reina Supermarket on South Congress Avenue.

At this point, police are calling it a horrible accident. Investigators said a 3,000 lb. commercial oven fell off a forklift, crushing the victim to death. The La Reina Supermarket that owned it is going out of business. The oven, that's used to make tortillas, was actually the object of a bidding war. Unfortunately, the man hired to move it ended up losing his life.

Palm Springs Police said the victim was right under the forklift carrying the oven when something went terribly wrong.

"They never made it to the truck," explained Palm Springs Police Lt. Sal Abruscato. "They were just using a hand forklift, for lack of a better term, and somehow it lost its footing there."

The other workers were powerless to move the massive machine that crushed another man to death right in front of them.

"This is right up there with the worst," said Lt. Abruscato. "It doesn't get much worse than somebody passing on."

The oven was part of La Reina Supermarket's going out of business auction. A.J. Dahwan came here Monday looking for a good deal to help his own supermarket business in West Palm Beach.

"I was bidding for that same oven," he said.

Dahwan was outbid.

"Gee, I can't believe it. It really does send a message," he said. "I'm very surprised by it. That was a very large oven. It's a very big piece of machinery and it's very sad to see that."

Palm Beach County Fire Rescue's special operations team had to use a large high pressure air bag to lift the oven so they could recover the victim's body. As Dahwan thinks about that man's family, he is making more safety plans for his own business.

"I guess the message is to put safety first," he said. "You know, the equipment that we bought I'm going to make sure that we handle everything very professionally and put safety first."

Palm Springs Police have not released the victim's name. They do not suspect foul play; however, they are still investigating.

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