Today's News

Excavating firm, president plead guilty in trench collapse

The president of an excavating company pleaded guilty, as did the firm, to violating federal workplace safety rules in a fatal trench collapse last year, the Associated Press reports.

Glen Wagner, 35, of McDonald, Penna., pleaded guilty Wednesday to a charge of willfully violating an OSHA regulation that caused the death of an employee. Wagner Excavation Service, Inc., of North Fayette Township, Penna., also pleaded guilty to the same charge. Under federal law, corporations can be charged with crimes as though they were individuals.

William Partin, 39, of North Fayette, was killed and another man injured in June 2004 while they were working in a 12-foot-deep trench on a storm water drainage project in North Franklin Township, about 25 miles southwest of Pittsburgh.

Wagner faces up to six months in prison and a fine of up to $250,000 when he's sentenced Jan. 6 before U.S. District Judge Terry McVerry. Wagner Excavation faces a criminal fine of up to $500,000.

Wagner is also vice president of Wagner Development Inc., which contracted with North Franklin Township to install the drainage system. Wagner Development, which wasn't charged, subcontracted with Wagner Excavation to dig the trenches. Wagner is the president of the excavating firm.

OSHA had previously imposed the largest trench-related workplace fine ever in Pennsylvania, $382,875, against Wagner's companies. OSHA found the companies weren't using a trench box at the time of Partin's death. Prosecutors said the companies had workers in trenches without proper reinforcement although OSHA had issued previous warnings at the site, at which there had been other cave-ins that didn't injure workers.

The companies had rented a trench box, but it was lying unused nearby when Partin was killed, and the trench he was in was too deep, authorities said.

Did you enjoy this article? Click here to subscribe to ISHN.

You must login or register in order to post a comment.

Multimedia

Videos

Image Galleries

Scenes from the World of Safety

Sights, signs & symbols from the National Safety Congress & Expo held in San Diego, CA, September 15-18

3/31/15 11:00 am EST

Changes to NFPA 70E® – What You Need to Know

NFPA ® for Electrical Safety in the Workplace is revised every three years, providing the most up-to-date requirements for safe work practices to reduce exposure to electrical hazards. This program analyzes several significant changes in 70E ® and is designed to clarify the reasoning behind the changes, and assist in determining how the changes impact employees and employers.

ISHN Magazine

ISHN0315_cover.jpg

2015 March

Check out ISHN's March issue, which features articles about moisture wicking technology, toxic gas detection and fall protection.

Table Of Contents Subscribe

THE ISHN STORE

M:\General Shared\__AEC Store Katie Z\AEC Store\Images\ISHN\safetyfourth.jpg
Safety Engineering, 4th Edition

A practical, solutions-driven reference, Safety Engineering, 4th edition, has been completely revised and updated to reflect many of today’s issues in safety.

More Products

For Distributors Only - January 2015

FDO JAN 2015 COVER

 

For Distributors Only is ISHN's niche brand standard-sized magazine supplement aimed at an audience of 2,000 U.S. distributors that sell safety products. Circulation only goes to distributors. 

CHECK OUT THE JANUARY 2015 ISSUE OF FDO HERE

STAY CONNECTED

Facebook logo Twitter YouTubeLinkedIn Google + icon

ishn infographics

2012 US workplace deathsCheck out ISHN's new Infographic page! Learn more about worker safety through these interactive images. CLICK HERE to view the page.