Unfortunate worksite accident leaves young boy dead

Aug. 18, 2009

As a writer who used to cover such news in my previous work history, a particular story in today’s morning paper pulled at my heartstrings as my eyes scanned the headline and story: "Boy killed in accident at work site with dad." According to the Chicago Tribune, investigators believe that Valente Torres was sitting on his father’s lap in the Bobcat front loader his father was operating at the time when a jolt caused the machine’s bucket to fall and the boy to fall forward. The boy involved in the accident was to start the 4th grade in a few weeks. The report also mentioned that a neighbor had also seen the boy climbing on the Bobcat when it was turned off.

What pains me is that I cannot understand what the father was thinking-or the mother, for that matter. According to Phillip Weeks, the fiancé of one of Valente's older sisters, the father would bring the child with him to the work site "just to hang out with him," as cited in today’s report. What parent allows their child, especially at such a young age, to come to such a dangerous environment just because they want to "hang out" or spend time together? And how is it possible to not realize the dangers involved?

I can understand wanting to spend time with your child, especially when time is limited but at what cost?

- Natalia Kosk, Assistant Editor, Security Dealer & Integrator

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