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HomeAustraliaMark Ellis, a warehouse worker in Sydney, recounts a horrific forklift mishap.

Mark Ellis, a warehouse worker in Sydney, recounts a horrific forklift mishap.

Date:

Gruesome details come to light in a horrific warehouse accident after an employee was crushed by a forklift – while sharing an urgent warning

  • Man lost his leg in a forklift accident
  • He now provides education on workplace safety

A man who lost his leg in a horrific forklift accident has revealed shocking details about the incident and the way it dramatically changed his life.

Mark Ellis’ right leg had to be amputated after an accident at a Sydney warehouse in May 2016.

Mr Ellis said he went out to ‘find material’ before a ‘split second’ cost him a limb.

“During that process I stepped back to look up and the guy on the big side loader forklift came into me and dragged my right foot under the forklift,” he said. 7News.

Mr Ellis relived the horrific experience on Tuesday at a safety conference in Sydney Markets as authorities explore ways to improve worker safety.

Mark Ellis now walks with a prosthetic leg after losing his right leg in a forklift accident in 2016

His right leg was crushed to the knee and eventually had to be amputated.

Mr Ellis says he now walks with a prosthetic leg, which he says means he has to plan his daily life more carefully.

He regularly speaks to forklift operators at conferences as a SafeWork Ambassador to educate them about workplace safety and help prevent similar accidents.

Mr. Ellis believes it is important to share the personal details of his experience, as it can help others become more aware of their behavior in workplaces where forklifts operate.

“Any boss in the world can stand up and say to his staff, ‘Here’s safety, here’s what to do, here’s what to look out for,'” he said.

“But when they see a guy standing there with one leg, who was involved in an incident… then the impact and the message of someone like me, who they see standing here with a prosthetic leg, has much more impact . ‘

Mr Ellis said he witnessed people being moved by sharing his story.

“You can really tell they’re touched, whether they feel sorry for you or whatever, it conveys the message to them that if we fill it up here, that’s what I could do to one of my colleagues,” said he.

Mr Ellis says that while he only saw photos of his broken leg after the incident, his colleagues saw it happen in real time.

“They never, ever forget that,” he said.

Mr Ellis said the accident was so traumatizing for his colleagues that the company was closed for five days.

He also said the ordeal has had a “huge” impact on his partner.

“Life is okay, but you just do a lot of things very differently,” he said.

“I’m lucky enough to still be able to do a lot of things that I enjoy and used to enjoy…but you have to think about it a lot more now.”

Mr. Ellis now speaks at conferences to warn others about the dangers of forklift trucks (stock image pictured)

Mr. Ellis now speaks at conferences to warn others about the dangers of forklift trucks (stock image pictured)

NSW state government plans to increase workplace safety inspectors presence (stock image pictured)

NSW state government plans to increase workplace safety inspectors presence (stock image pictured)

NSW Industrial Relations and Minister of Labour, Health and Safety Sophie Cotsis joined Mr Ellis at the Sydney Markets safety conference.

Ms. Cotsis said similar safety conferences will be rolled out statewide as part of a plan to reduce workplace injuries.

“For forklift safety, we want to see zero tolerance and that’s why today’s session was very, very important,” she said.

The NSW state government also plans to increase the presence of workplace safety inspectors.

According to the Australian Institute of Work & Safety, there are more workplace injuries and deaths with forklifts than with any other type of equipment.

In the past four years, eight people have died as a result of forklift incidents in the workplace.

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