Their task was to recover a man trapped under metal racks in a storage room and the process was long and gruelling.
Metal racks and crates filled with fruit had fallen and crushed a worker, who is believed to be in his 60s.
Paramedics declared him dead before the items pinning him could be removed. Each rack, which is about 1.5m by 1.5m and around 4m in height, held about 70 crates of fruit, believed to be longans.
The accident was reported at about 9.50am yesterday and Singapore Civil Defence Force (SCDF) personnel took about three hours to extricate the body.
To do so, rescuers had to manually remove the crates before lifting the metal racks using two forklifts.
The operation had to be carefully carried out because any sudden movement of the toppled racks might cause the adjacent ones to topple, SCDF said.
Investigations are ongoing, police said.
The warehouse, which belongs to QAF Fruits Cold Store, specialises in the storage of fruit.
QAF, a wholesale food trading and distribution company, imports and distributes food and beverage products from well-known brands such as Farmland and Cowhead.
Company officials declined to comment.
The latest accident is the 37th major case of people trapped between objects this year, according to the Ministry of Manpower (MOM) and the Workplace Safety and Health Council. For the whole of last year, there were 25 such incidents.
MOM statistics show that there were a total of 1,092 injuries sustained by workers last year. Five of these cases ended in death.
This article was first published on August 16, 2014.
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