City employee killed in snow removal high lift accident

"We are heartbroken. We are in pain right now"

Buffalo, NY (WBEN) - Buffalo Mayor Byron Brown announced the death of a city employee after being struck by a high lift operating in reverse Wednesday afternoon in South Buffalo.

Snow removal operations will be suspended for 48 hours starting at 5pm Wednesday as a result.

"We are heartbroken, we are hurting right now," says Brown, who said the incident happened at McKinley near Olcott. Brown says he will not be identifying the worker who lost his life as notifications are still being made to family members. Brown did say the employee was a decades-long veteran of the City of Buffalo.

Buffalo Police Commissioner Joseph Gramaglia says the incident is under investigation. "About 11:15 this morning, a high loader truck was dumping a load of snow into one of the dump trucks, while in reverse, fatally struck the worker. He was declared deceased on scene," says Gramaglia. He says he is in talks with the district attorney's office as is normally the case with accident investigations.

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Brown says the striking vehicle was a third party contractor that had been retained by the City of Buffalo to assist with the snow removal.

Brown says snow removal operations will be suspended at 5pm for 48 hours.

Featured Image Photo Credit: WBEN Photo