A 25-year-old man died after being crushed while working at a welding company.
Father-to-be Richard Calsen, known as Chard, suffered crush injuries and went into cardiac arrest at John Fowler and Son in Abbey Village, near Chorley.
Police were seen inspecting a bin wagon in the firm’s yard at Abbey Mill in Garden Street, shortly after the incident on Saturday afternoon.
Mr Calsen died at the scene.
An investigation into the circumstances surrounding his death is under way.
Mr Calsen, who who lived in Brinscall before recently moving to Buckshaw Village, was the son of Lynn and Peter Calsen, and one of five siblings.
In a statement, his family said: “We are devastated at the loss of Richard who was sadly taken from us at the prime of his life.
“He lived his life to the full.
“We have lost a loving and caring son, brother, uncle, great friend and father-to-be, who was looking forward to a bright future.
“The family ask for privacy at this time.”
And Jade Halpin, 28, who is pregnant with Mr Calsen’s child, said on Facebook: “Love you Chard. Can’t believe I’ve lost you.”
Ambulances, police and the North West Air Ambulance were called to the blacksmith and welding company at 3pm. People from Abbey Village gathered at the scene and one witness said: “I saw the helicopter land at the back of Abbey Mill at around 3.40pm. There were four or five police cars, ambulances, and the helicopter.
“I knew it must have been something serious because there were people everywhere.”
Paramedic cars and ambulances left without their sirens on at 4.30pm.
A gate at the business was closed at around 5pm, and detectives could be seen examining a bin wagon in the firm’s yard. John Fowler and Son offers skip refurbishment, bin wagon repairs, litter nets, and also has a timber yard, it said online. It said it has previously worked on projects with Hyndburn Council, the Hilton Hotel in Deansgate, Manchester, Manchester Airport, and Coleshill Railway Station.
It was incorporated in 2003 and is run by 63-year-old John Fowler, of Bury Lane, Withnell, Chorley, and 58-year-old William Fowler, of Gladstone Terrace, also in Withnell, according to documents lodged with Companies House.
Nobody at the business could be reached for comment over the weekend.
Local councillor Chris France said the news will have shocked the community. He said: “It’s terrible news.
“It’s a small, quiet village with a small population. There will be a lot of shocked people about.”
A Lancashire Police spokesman said: “At 3pm on Saturday, police were called by the ambulance service to reports a man had suffered injuries while working at an industrial unit at Abbey Village, near Chorley.
“Police and paramedics attended but sadly a 25-year-old local man was pronounced dead at the scene.
“A joint police and Health and Safety Executive investigation is underway to establish the circumstances and is in its early stages.”
A spokesman for the HSE added: “We are aware of Saturday’s incident and we are making enquiries.”