Worker Prepping for Storm Killed by 100-Foot Salt Pile He suffocated, say police By Kate Seamons, Newser Staff Posted Jan 3, 2014 12:45 AM CST 37 comments Comments Sanitation workers use tractors to pile up salt at a depot; not the scene in question. (AP Photo/Mary Altaffer) (Newser) – With a storm expected to dump more than a foot of snow on parts of the Northeast, cities throughout the region spent Thursday preparing—in one case with deadly consequences. A worker in a Philadelphia-area salt yard was killed yesterday afternoon after a 100-foot-tall rock salt pile collapsed on him. NBC Philadelphia reports that the unidentified man was moving the salt, which is scattered on roads to help keep them free of snow and ice, using a front-end loader. When the pile fell, it buried both the man and the machine. Emergency crews descended on the scene at the International Salt facility in Morrisville with shovels, but eventually found the man dead in his seat. The Inquirer reports that police say suffocation was the cause of death.