Industrial-Related Cause of Deaths

The Industrial Revolution was the transition to new manufacturing processes in Europe and the United States, in the period from between 1760 to 1820 and 1840. This transition included going from hand production methods to machines, new chemical manufacturing and iron production processes, the increasing use of steam power and water power, the development of machine tools and the rise of the mechanized factory system. The Industrial Revolution also led to an unprecedented rise in the rate of population growth.

Textiles were the dominant industry of the Industrial Revolution in terms of employment, value of output and capital invested. The textile industry was also the first to use modern production methods.

The Industrial Revolution began in Great Britain, and many of the technological innovations were of British origin. By the mid-18th century Britain was the world’s leading commercial nation, controlling a global trading empire with colonies in North America and the Caribbean, and with major military and political hegemony on the Indian subcontinent, particularly with the proto-industrialised Mughal Bengal, through the activities of the East India Company. The development of trade and the rise of business were among the major causes of the Industrial Revolution. (**place-holder text from Industrial Revolution Wikipedia page)

Deaths Caused by Construction

Falls in Construction

Though less common now due to safety laws and practices, falls were a common cause of death among workers.

In Memory of JOHN MCQUILLAN Who Departed this Life June 14th 1829 Aged 18 years & 8 months. The death of this lovely promising youth was occasioned by a fall from a scaffold. **taken from headstone inscription

Falling is the action of a person or animal losing stability and ending up in a lower position, often on the ground. It is the second-leading cause of accidental death worldwide and a major cause of personal injury, especially for the elderly. Falls in older adults are a major class of preventable injuries. Construction workers, electricians, miners, and painters are occupations with high rates of fall injuries. **place-holder text from Wikipedia article on falling

IN 1840, ISAMBARD KINGDOM BRUNEL’S famous London to Bristol Great Western Railway arrived at Reading. So it could reach the town, the railway builders made a cutting nearly two miles long and up to 60 feet deep through high ground at Sonning. Several men were killed or injured digging this cutting. But what’s perhaps the railway’s most unusual death was the result of a bizarre weather event. On March 24, just six days before the opening of Reading’s new station, a freak whirlwind killed rail worker Henry West. The highly unusual mini-tornado ripped off a four-ton section of the station roof. Henry, a 24-year-old carpenter from Wiltshire who was fixing the glazing of the roof at the time, was hurled to his death. His broken body was found 200 feet away in a ditch. A few days later his funeral was held at the nearby St Laurence church. It was attended by more than 40 of his fellow workmen, some of whom erected a wooden marker (known as a “rail”) on his grave to commemorate him. **place-holder text from AtlasObscura

In Memory of JOSEPH WORDSWORTH, plumber, late of York, who died 10th March, 1863, aged 27 years. His death was caused by a fall from the triumphal arch, while engaged in its erection, in crown street, Halifax, on the occasion of the marriage of H.R.H. The Prince of Wales. This stone was erected by the trade and friends of the deceased, as a tribute of respect to his memory. **taken from headstone inscription

Falling Objects Killing non-workers

“In remembrance of Jo (Bentley) aged 4 years & 8 months, son of Job & Emma Bentley of this town, and who on returning from school on the 24th of May, 1860, was instantly killed by a fall of planks carelessly piled in Delph Street.” **taken from headstone inscription

Falling is the action of a person or animal losing stability and ending up in a lower position, often on the ground. It is the second-leading cause of accidental death worldwide and a major cause of personal injury, especially for the elderly. Falls in older adults are a major class of preventable injuries. Construction workers, electricians, miners, and painters are occupations with high rates of fall injuries. **place-holder text from Wikipedia article on falling

Deaths Caused by Factory Accidents

Lack of safety regulations and laws led to deaths not only among factory workers but also among the populations who lived near industrial sites – namely by trespassing, falling objects, explosions, pollutants, and other hazards.

Workers Killed by Factory Accidents

THIS STONE IS ERECTED by Subscription of the hands employed at Lumford Mill TO THE MEMORY OF JAMES MILLS who whilst working there was suddenly killed by being caught by a shaft on the 20th July, 1846, Aged 22 Years. **taken from headstone inscription

Around 600 people were killed in accidental explosions at explosives works during the First World War. Most loss of life can be attributed to the manufacture of the high explosive TNT and its derivative amatol. In British service this was a new explosive and the principal production hazard was thought to be fire. Factories were established in converted buildings in built-up areas: a decision that had devastating results when a TNT plant exploded at Ashton-under-Lyne, Greater Manchester, where 53 died, and later at Silvertown, east London, killing 69. In both incidents, workers and local residents lost their lives. Explosions in purpose-built factories could be equally shattering: at Faversham, Kent, in April 1916, 108 were killed, only exceeded by an explosion at Chilwell, Nottingham, where there were 134 fatalities. **place-holder text from HistoricEngland

Non-Worker Deaths Caused by Factory Waste

“Frightful affair at Darlington – two boys roasted alive” read the Northern Echo headline on 7 March 1888. The previous morning Ralph Cummin and Samuel Wight had been among a group of boys playing on the cinder heap of the Darlington Steel & Iron company – a constantly burning fire with a thin crust of ash, used to dispose of the refuse from the works beside the river Skerne. The boys were running across the surface when it gave way and a large hole opened up. When the smoke and dust cleared Cummin and Wight were not to be seen. As it was almost time for school the other boys assumed that they had already set off towards St Paul’s School, which they attended with Wight, but he did not arrive. The alarm was eventually raised when the two boys failed to return home in the evening. Eventually their remains and possessions, comprising two jaw bones, vertebrae and smaller bones, buttons and the wire from a catapult that Wight had been carrying, were pulled from the fiery heap. **place-holder text from AboutDarlington

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Deaths by Industrial Age Inventions

Often, deaths associated with in the industrial age are attributed to illnesses and accidents caused and/or occurring in factory or related setting; however, the inventions of the industrial age were also major killers as societies learned how to live with newly created machines in their everyday lives.

Death by Automobile

A traffic collision, also called a motor vehicle collision, car accident, or car crash, occurs when a vehicle collides with another vehicle, pedestrian, animal, road debris, or other stationary obstruction, such as a tree, pole or building. Traffic collisions often result in injury, disability, death, and property damage as well as financial costs to both society and the individuals involved.

Road transport is the most dangerous situation people deal with on a daily basis, but casualty figures from such incidents attract less media attention than other, less frequent types of tragedy.

A number of factors contribute to the risk of collisions, including vehicle design, speed of operation, road design, weather, road environment, driving skills, impairment due to alcohol or drugs, and behavior, notably aggressive driving, distracted driving, speeding and street racing. **place-holder text from Traffic Collision Wikipedia Page

Death by Airplanes

The Vickers Viking was a British single-engine amphibious aircraft designed for military use shortly after World War I. Later versions of the aircraft were known as the Vickers Vulture and Vickers Vanellus. Research on Vickers’ first amphibious aircraft type began in December 1918 with tests of alternative fuselage/hull designs occurring in an experimental tank at St Albans in Hertfordshire, England. A prototype, registered G-EAOV, was a five-seat cabin biplane with a pusher propeller driven by a Rolls-Royce Falcon water-cooled V 12 engine. Sir John Alcock died taking this aircraft to the Paris exhibition on 18 December 1919, whilst trying to land at Côte d’Evrard, near Rouen, Normandy in foggy weather. **place-holder text from Vickers Viking Wikipedia Page.

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Deaths Caused by Maritime Industry

Accidents on Loading Docks

Maritime history is the study of human interaction with and activity at sea. It covers a broad thematic element of history that often uses a global approach, although national and regional histories remain predominant. As an academic subject, it often crosses the boundaries of standard disciplines, focusing on understanding humankind’s various relationships to the oceans, seas, and major waterways of the globe. Nautical history records and interprets past events involving ships, shipping, navigation, and seafarers. **place-holder text taken from Wikipedia page on maritime history

Accidents at Sea

The Halifax Explosion was a disaster that occurred in Halifax, Nova Scotia, Canada, on the morning of 6 December 1917. SS Mont-Blanc, a French cargo ship laden with high explosives, collided with the Norwegian vessel SS Imo in the Narrows, a strait connecting the upper Halifax Harbour to Bedford Basin. A fire on board the Mont-Blanc led to a massive explosion that devastated the Richmond district of Halifax. Approximately 2,000 people were killed, largely in Halifax and Dartmouth, by the blast, debris, fires, or collapsed buildings, and an estimated 9,000 others were injured. The blast was the largest human-made explosion at the time, releasing the equivalent energy of roughly 2.9 kilotons of TNT (12 TJ). **place-holder text taken from Wikipedia page on the Halifax Explosion

Deaths and the Mining Industry

Injuries, illnesses, and deaths were common in the coal-mining industry due to the conditions and environment of the workplace – cave-ins, gas leaks, falling objects, falls, explosions, and lung diseases were often consequences of working in coal-mines.

A mining accident is an accident that occurs during the process of mining minerals or metals. Thousands of miners die from mining accidents each year, especially from underground coal mining, although accidents also occur in hard rock mining. Coal mining is considered much more hazardous than hard rock mining due to flat-lying rock strata, generally incompetent rock, the presence of methane gas, and coal dust. Most of the deaths these days occur in developing countries, and rural parts of developed countries where safety measures are not practiced as fully. **place-holder text from Wikipedia article on Mining accidents

Mine Shaft Falls

Coal mining is the process of extracting coal from the ground. Coal is valued for its energy content and since the 1880s has been widely used to generate electricity. Steel and cement industries use coal as a fuel for extraction of iron from iron ore and for cement production. In the United Kingdom and South Africa, a coal mine and its structures are a colliery, a coal mine is called a ‘pit’, and the above-ground structures are a ‘pit head’. In Australia, “colliery” generally refers to an underground coal mine. Coal mining has had many developments over the recent years, from the early days of men tunneling, digging, and manually extracting the coal on carts to large open cut and long wall mines. Mining at this scale requires the use of draglines, trucks, conveyors, hydraulic jacks and shearers. **text-holder taken from Wikipedia article on Coal Mining

Mine Explosions

The disaster and rescue attempt were national news, but the impact on the local communities and the victims’ families is still felt today.

The flame from a carbide lamp ignited a pocket of firedamp. Only a small explosion was felt at first, but this ignited more gas and within half an hour the timbers and oil shale in the mine were on fire. Thirty eight men were able to escape, bringing with them the body of John McGarty who had been killed by the initial explosion. Another fourteen men were trapped behind the fire. Despite “one of the most dramatic and gallant rescue bids in the history of mining”, the trapped men could not be reached, and their bodies were brought out of the pit on the 15th of January. The fifteen victims left behind a total of 11 widows and 26 children. Burngrange was the worst disaster in the history of Scottish shale mining. **(temporary) place-holder text found at WestlothianStory.Home.Blog

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Deaths Caused by Railroad

The railroad was a popular method that aided not only the growth of industry, but also the spread and travel of populations via transportation that was faster than traditional methods like by foot or horse. The lack of laws, regulations, and safety procedures, as well as the newness of the railroad, led to numerous accidents, injuries, and deaths – of both workers and nonworkers – associated with trains.

Railroad Worker Deaths

A boiler explosion is a catastrophic failure of a boiler. There are two types of boiler explosions. One type is a failure of the pressure parts of the steam and water sides. There can be many different causes, such as failure of the safety valve, corrosion of critical parts of the boiler, or low water level. Corrosion along the edges of lap joints was a common cause of early boiler explosions.

The second kind is a fuel/air explosion in the furnace, which would more properly be termed a firebox explosion. Firebox explosions in solid-fuel-fired boilers are rare, but firebox explosions in gas or oil-fired boilers are still a potential hazard. **place-holder text from Wikipedia article on boiler explosions

This stone is erected in memory of John Kidd, who lost his life at the end of the inclined tunnel on the Midland Line at Sheffield, December 8th, 1846, Aged 29 years. Here lieth the body of John Kidd, in eternal realms his soul is hid; a railway engine did him kill. And crushed his poor head so ill. **place-holder text from gravestone inscription.

Non-Worker Railway Deaths

Pedestrian railroad safety is concerned with the protection of life through regulation, management and technology development of all forms of rail transportation. In the United States there are some 180,000 miles of track. Pedestrian railroad accidents are the leading cause of death on railways. More than 7,200 pedestrians have been killed by trains in the United States since 1997. **place-holder text from Wikipedia article Pedestrian Railroad Safety in the US

The Abbots Ripton rail disaster occurred on 21 January 1876 at Abbots Ripton, then in the county of Huntingdonshire, England, on the Great Northern Railway main line, previously thought to be exemplary for railway safety. In the accident, the Special Scotch Express train from Edinburgh to London was involved in a collision, during a blizzard, with a coal train. An express travelling in the other direction then ran into the wreckage. The initial accident was caused by: 1) over-reliance on signals and block working as allowing high-speed running even in adverse conditions; 2) systematic signal failure in the adverse conditions of that day due to a vulnerability to accumulation of snow and ice. The accident (and the subsequent inquiry into it) led to fundamental changes in British railway signalling practice. (place-holder text from Wikipedia article on Abbots Ripton rail accident