Today's News / Facility Safety

Texas worker killed in accident on third day on the job

Employer Coastal Plating Company had previous OSHA citations

May 31, 2013
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Today's NewsChristopher Cantu, a 22-year-old worker in Corpus Christi, Texas, was killed Tuesday when a 2,600-pound metal tank fell on him. Sources say it was Cantu’s third day on the job.

The tank, which contained sand blasting material, was being moved by a crane when it fell on Cantu, according to police. The accident is under investigation.

Cantu’s employer, Coastal Plating Company, has been cited for seven violations by OSHA within the past five years for hazards relating to cranes, among other issues.

In the wake of this and other accidents involving new employees, the National Council for Occupational Safety & Health (National COSH) is calling for stepped-up safety training.

In another incident, 21-year-old Lawrence Daquan “Day” Davis was killed in 2013 on his first day as a temporary worker at the Bacardi Bottling Corp. in Jacksonville, Fla.

Davis was cleaning glass from under the hoist of a palletizing machine, when another employee restarted the palletizer. Davis was crushed to death by the machine.

“Bacardi Bottling had failed to train temporary employees on using locks and tags to prevent the accidental startup of machines and to ensure its own employees utilized lock-out/tag-out procedures,” according to National COSH.

In response to Davis’ death, OSHA chief Dr. David Michaels said, “A worker’s first day at work shouldn’t be his last day on Earth. We are seeing untrained workers – many of them temporary workers – killed very soon after starting a new job. This must stop. Employers must train all employees, including temporary workers, on the hazards specific to that workplace – before they start working. Had Bacardi done so, this tragic loss of life could have been prevented.”

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