August 28, 2014

Elyria
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Van rolls over Ford worker’s head; he survives

Grafton man in stable condition

SHEFFIELD — A worker whose head was run over by a van at Ford’s Ohio Assembly Plant on Wednesday was in stable condition at a Cleveland hospital just hours after the accident, a hospital spokeswoman said.
Glenn Blackford, 56, of Grafton, was working in the railroad yard outside the Ford plant when the accident occurred, Sheffield Police Chief Michael Gurich said.
Blackford was writing down the serial number of a Ford van that was driven off one of the railroad cars when, about 3 p.m., the van struck him in the back of the leg and caused him to fall, police said.
“The driver was in the vehicle and was pulling away,” Gurich said. “(Blackford) turned and stepped backwards … and fell down.”
The van’s rear tire ran over Blackford’s head, Gurich said, adding that the vehicle’s gross weight on the rear axle is about 9,450 pounds. The van had dual tires on the rear axle.
Blackford was still somewhat conscious when Sheffield firefighters and police arrived, despite suffering severe head trauma.
“He was alive and breathing, but semiconscious,” Gurich said.
Blackford was taken by ambulance to EMH Regional Medical Center’s Avon emergency room, from which he was flown to Cleveland Clinic’s Huron Road trauma center in Cleveland.
Around 10:30 p.m. Wednesday, a spokeswoman at the Huron Road hospital said Blackford was in stable condition.
Gurich said the accident occurred in the railroad yard just east of the Abbe Road overpass. While police are still investigating the accident, the van driver wasn’t cited as of late Wednesday, Gurich said.
“It was more or less an industrial accident,” Gurich said.
Contact Shawn Foucher at 329-7197 or sfoucher@chroniclet.com.