A Rikers Island inmate choked to death Friday on an orange — and there was no correction officer patrolling the floor of his unit to render aid or call for help, sources tell the Daily News.

The death of Herman Diaz, 52, is the latest example of the consequences of the ongoing staffing crisis at the dysfunctional jail complex. On Sunday, The News exclusively reported that a stunning total of 6,637 posts were unstaffed — or 54 a day — during a 122-day period starting in September of last year.

Diaz had been held in the Eric M. Taylor Center on Rikers since Feb. 27 for robbery, menacing and violations of state parole, records show.

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