Last August, a worker at Export Fuel Co. in Export was crushed to death by a pavement roller. Now, after an investigation of the company's safety practices after the fatal accident, OSHA has cited the company for 18 serious safety violations and proposed a fine of $41,300.
According to news reports at the time, the 55-year-old man was a mechanic who had been working on the pavement roller's engine. The engine started unexpectedly, engaged into drive and rolled over the man, crushing him to death.
A "serious" workplace safety violation, according to OSHA, is one the company knew or should have known about and which exposes workers to a substantial risk of serious injury or death. Export Fuel, as we have said, was cited with a shocking 18 such serious violations.
The violation that most directly related to the 2012 fatal accident was Export Fuel's failure to provide its workers with appropriate training to perform maintenance on, or even to operate, construction vehicles.
"Training workers to recognize and address hazards is essential," said the director of OSHA's Pittsburgh Area Office, "and Export Fuel failed to train its workers on the operation and maintenance of the pavement roller, which ultimately led to a worker's death."
Other serious workplace safety violations at Export Fuel included electrical hazards, lack of energy control procedures, failure to provide a safe entrance or exit, and a lack of safety equipment or protective guards on industrial tools or equipment.
"It is the employer's responsibility to provide a safe workplace by finding and fixing hazards, so all workers are protected," says OSHA.
- OSHA Region 3 news release, "US Labor Department's OSHA cites Export Fuel Co. in Export, Pa., following worker fatality in August 2012," Feb. 27, 2013
- Pittsburgh Tribune-Review, "Man crushed in Salem construction accident," Rossilynne Skena, Aug. 28, 2012