Truck driver dies after attempting to scan RFID

A 59-year-old truck driver was killed this spring while attempting to scan his identity card and enter a sand dredge facility located in Texas.

The United States Department of Labor and Mine Safety released a report earlier this week on how Manuel G. Rodriguez fell out of his truck and was run over by his own vehicle while trying to gain access to Rye Dredge & Plant, which is owned and operated by Trinity Materials, Inc.

Mr. Rodriguez was attempting to scan a card that identifies customer trucks entering the facility to load material. Investigators believe Mr. Rodriguez approached the Apex Express Radio Frequency Identification Card Reader (RFID) but positioned the vehicle too far away from the RFID to scan the card from inside the truck. Investigators conclude Mr. Rodriquez removed his seatbelt, opened the driver’s side door, and leaned out of the cab with his right foot on the clutch pedal and the truck in gear. The truck moved forward, causing him to fall out. The accident occurred because the victim did not properly secure the truck by setting the parking brake and putting the vehicle in park before opening the door and leaning out of the truck.

The scale house attendent heard a loud noise and looked through the scale house window and saw a truck on the side of the road near the RFID and someone under the belly dump portion of the truck. Workers at the scene began cardiopulmonary resuscitation, but Rodriquez did not respond. Emergency medical responders arrived at the accident scene at 8:58 a.m., and Rodriguez was pronounced dead at the scene. Cause of death was “blunt force injuries.”

After the accident the mine operator has discontinued the use of the RFID system. Instead, handheld and CB radios will be used to communicate with truck drivers. Drivers are also advised to set park brakes prior to leaving the cab.