Michele Dufault, a Yale senior physics and astronomy major, suffered an accidental death yesterday when her loose hair got caught up in a metalworking lathe, leading to asphyxia due to neck compression.
What makes accidents like this even more tragic is how the loss of life could have been easily avoided had proper safety precautions been taken. One of the most basic personal safety rules is to remove loose clothing and tie back long hair when working with power or machine shop tools.
Quite a few questions remain. Was the student properly trained, and if not, why wasn’t there any supervision? Perhaps as part of the training regiment, students should be required to view some of the graphic images that can be found when googling “lathe accident” or similar keywords.
Yale Senior Dies in Machine Shop via CNN