Construction worker airlifted after severe trauma
Published 4:08 pm Tuesday, October 18, 2005
By By Adam Prestridge
An Atmore man remains in the intensive care unit at Baptist Hospital in Pensacola following a construction accident that occurred at United Bank in Atmore Wednesday.
Berry Nall, 30, of Atmore suffered severe injuries after the rough terrain Lull forklift with a telescopic boom he was working from, tipped over and sent him plummeting to the parking lot from 30-feet in the air just before 6 p.m.
"The contractors are investigating," United Bank president and CEO Robert R. Jones said. "It's really not anything we're involved in. It was their employee and their equipment, so they're doing the investigation into it."
Nall, who recently returned from Iraq with the 711th Signal Battalion, is an employee of Audio Plus. According to Audio Plus owner James Helton, Nall was installing fiber optic communication cables when the incident occurred.
"We don't know just yet what occurred," Helton said. "They're (OSHA) still investigating that. We really don't know what happened. He's very fortunate to be alive."
When the forklift tipped over, it struck the right side of one of the portable buildings that United Bank is using for its employees while renovations to the bank continue. The force and the weight of the boom was so powerful that it not only did severe cosmetic damage to the trailer, but it crushed the cinder blocks supporting the portable work facility. Two employees were working inside the trailer when the accident occurred, but fortunately they were not injured.
Nall was transported by ambulance to Atmore Community Hospital. Life Flight later airlifted him to Baptist Hospital.
According to several of his friends, Nall suffered two broken jaws, two broken hips, several facial fractures, a broken elbow, a broken left femur, broken toes and a cut to his liver. Fortunately, even though Nall did hit his head, no brain damage has been detected.
Despite his injuries, Helton said Nall is in good spirits.
"He's doing much better," Helton said. "We went to see him last evening (Thursday) at the hospital. He's got a lot of damage, a lot of broken bones and he can't talk, but he was making some jokes and he would write some things down on his clipboard. He's doing much better. The prognosis is looking good for him, but it's going to take some time and a lot of surgeries to get him where he needs to be. I think he'll be alright."
Helton said the accident has affected his entire staff.
"We're all very upset about it," he said. "Everybody's really disheartened about it. We're all praying for a speedy recovery under the circumstances."
The employees at United Bank have been affected by the accident as well.
"We hate that the accident happened and hope that he has a speedy recovery," Jones said. "We're concerned about him. We certainly regret that he had the accident and wish him well."