Fatality Files: Woman Dies in Walk-In Freezer

Date First Published on SafetySmart Compliance: June 16th, 2016
Topics: Confined Spaces | Heat & Cold Stress |

A 61-year-old kitchen worker at a restaurant in Atlanta’s Westin Peachtree Plaza hotel died sometime after entering a walk-in freezer. Carolyn Robinson’s body was found inside the freezer after her husband contacted the hotel to say she had not returned home from her shift there.

Surveillance video shows Robinson entering the freezer at about 8 p.m. She was not found until about 13 hours later.

Atlanta police say there is no evidence of foul play in her death. The freezer has an escape mechanism, which was repeatedly tested with an OSHA inspector present. It was found to be fully functional.

It is possible that Robinson suffered some sort of medical event that left her incapable of getting out of the freezer.

A co-worker described her as a friendly and talkative person who was loved by everyone. She had worked at the hotel for more than 35 years.

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