Monika Hartl
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OSHA Fines Company $137K After Worker’s Death

The U.S. Occupational Safety Health Administration cited a River Falls, Wis.-based company with five safety violations after the November death of a 19-year-old worker.

An inspection followed the death of a 19-year-old worker of Gordy’s Pump Service who was killed when an unprotected trench collapsed in Spring Valley, Wis. He and a coworker had just finished locating an existing waterline in the trench using a handheld shovel when a sidewall caved in. The trench was about 220 feet long, 6 feet deep and 2 feet wide. The other worker escaped unharmed.

Two of the violations were willful violations and included failing to provide required cave-in protection as well as a means of egress from the trench. OSHA defines willful violations as those committed with intentional knowing or voluntary disregard for the law’s requirements, or with plain indifference to worker safety and health.

The three serious violations included failing to ensure the use of head protection, failing to keep spoils piles at least two feet back from excavation’s edge as well as failure to train employees working in trenches to recognize excavation hazards.

OSHA has proposed the company pay $137,000 in fines for the violations.¬†Gordy’s Pump Service has 15 business days to comply with the penalties, request an informal conference or contest the findings.

If you or your loved one has been injured in any work-related injury, it is imperative to speak with an experienced workers compensation attorney to discuss your legal options. Call today for a free, immediate consultation.

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Telephone: 262-204-8331
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