Caroselli, Beachler & Coleman, L.L.C.

Worker crushed to death in Pittsburgh area

Export Fuel Company in Export, Pennsylvania, just east of Pittsburgh, is being blamed for the death of a worker who was crushed by a pavement roller. The company has been now cited for what are called 18 serious safety violations by the U.S. Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA).

Apparently, OSHA felt that there were a variety of safety problems at the facility. Workers were worked under conditions where they might have been injured due to falls or been exposed to electrical hazards. OSHA stated that machinery and equipment did not contain the proper guarding. Also, there were a variety of training issues alleged, and it was claimed that safe exits for employees to escape the premises were lacking.

The OSHA penalties amounted to a $41,300 fine, and the company has 15 days to respond to OSHA. The OSHA violation tied to the workers' death concerns the failing to train workers regarding maintenance and operation of the pavement roller.

OSHA obviously believed that an unsafe worker environment existed in any case, and that such an environment could lead to workers' deaths. Many work-related accidents and deaths have been totally preventable if the employer had actually implemented various safety precautions.

Work-related deaths are complicated because the amount of compensation is often governed by local workers' compensation laws. But though a formula is put into place as to how much a family is entitled to, but family members still have the right to have an attorney present that understands these laws and can put forth reasons for what the amount of compensation should be.

Source: Tribune Review, "Roundup: OSHA cites firm in worker's death," Feb. 28, 2013

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Caroselli, Beachler & Coleman, L.L.C.
20 Stanwix Street, Seventh Floor
Pittsburgh, PA 15222

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