The man, who was the fourth person to die in a workplace accident this year, was crushed while servicing a lorry.
Superintendent Pat Maher said the man had been working on the vehicle when its cab compartment fell forward, pinning him to the ground.
Emergency services rushed to the garage two miles south of Dunmanway following the accident, which happened at 10am.
However, they were unable to save him and he was pronounced dead at the scene by a local doctor. Supt Maher said gardaí were treating the death as a “tragic accident”.
He said the accident happened in a yard adjacent to the garage and the man’s fellow workers were “upset and traumatised”.
He said the man’s identity would not be released until all his relatives had been informed.
He said gardaí had taken preliminary statements from some of the man’s colleagues, but further interviews would take place in the coming days because some of them were too traumatised at the time to help with inquiries.
“We have informed the Health & Safety Authority, which is carrying out its own investigation. We will be preparing a file which will be completed for a coroner’s inquest,” said Supt Maher.
The dead man’s remains were taken to Cork University Hospital where a postmortem examination was to be carried out by assistant state pathologist, Dr Margaret Bolster.
A spokesman for the Health & Safety Authority said: “This is the fourth workplace accident we have come across so far this year. There were 67 workplace deaths last year. If the current trend keeps up we will have less deaths than last year. But unfortunately we can get multiple accidents at anytime&.”