A 23-year-old Santa Paula man was crushed to death Friday when a forklift he was driving flipped over and landed on top of him, the Ventura County Sheriff's Department reported.
Jose Munoz Martinez was killed instantly during the 1 p.m. accident at an Oxnard Lemon Co. orchard in the 4600 block of Sand Canyon Road in Somis, authorities said.
"He was moving crates of lemons down an incline that had a lot of ruts," said sheriff's spokesman Eric Nishimoto. "Apparently the forklift got caught in a rut and that caused it to flip."
Lemon pickers working in the orchard heard the forklift overturn and rushed to the scene, deputies said.
The accident occurred in an unincorporated area of the county north of Somis, Nishimoto said. The site is owned by the lemon company, and the victim was an employee of Sun Valley Farm Labor.
The case is under investigation by the Sheriff's Department and the state Division of Occupational Safety and Health.