Both the Gardai and the Health and Safety Authority have commenced investigations at Cappoquin Poultry, after a 23-year-old worker lost his life in an industrial accident at the chicken processing plant on Monday morning.

The Polish man, who had been residing in the area for about three years, was killed after a number of palettes containing boxes of frozen chickens collapsed on him, causing severe head injuries.

The man, named locally as Tomasz Klodnicki, was due to marry his Polish girlfriend later this year. He was working in a cold storage room at the processing plant at the time of the incident, which is believed to have occurred at approximately 8am.

Mr Klodnicki was found by a fellow worker and while efforts were made to revive him, he was pronounced dead at the scene. The fire service and gardai rushed to the processing plant when the alarm was raised. The deceased was brought to Waterford Regional Hospital for a post-mortem on Monday, while gardai sealed off the scene of the tragic accident pending an examination.

Staff at Cappoquin Poultry are understood to be deeply shocked at the death, the first of its kind in the history of the factory. The deceased has been described in the area as a ‘young man who was very well liked by everyone here … a nice guy who always seemed to have a smile on his face’.