Contractor Fined $14,000 in Worker’s Drowning Death

Davide Nascimento was working on the installation of a sewer line when a portion of roadway above the excavation fell, breaking a water main.
Contractor Fined $14,000 in Worker’s Drowning Death
A 65-year-old worker died earlier this month after falling 50 feet into an open manhole.

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The Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) has cited a Massachusetts contractor for two serious violations of workplace safety standards after a worker drowned during the installation of a sewer line.

OSHA has proposed a $7,000 fine for each violation for a total fine of $14,000.

Davide Nascimento, a 28-year-old father of two, was working on the installation of a sewer line on July 31 when a portion of the roadway above the excavation fell, breaking a 6-inch water main. Nascimento drowned after getting trapped inside the trench.

The investigation concluded that the contractor, A. Martins & Sons of Ludlow, Massachusetts, did not protect the waterline and did not inspect the excavation for conditions that could lead to a trench collapse, such as weakened walls from the previous night’s rainstorm, according to a report by Construction Dive.

“Mr. Nascimento would not have died had his employer followed proper procedures to identify and eliminate excavation hazards,” says Mary Hoye, OSHA’s area director for central and western Massachusetts.

“Trenching and excavation operations are among the most dangerous in construction work,” she says. “Employers must educate themselves and employees on trenching safeguards, including cave-in protection and having a competent person on site to identify hazards and promptly correct any hazards.”

There have been several high-profile trench and excavation-related incidents during the last several months. OSHA fined a Texas contractor more than $400,000 after a worker was seriously injured in a trench collapse. The Kentucky Occupational Safety and Health agency fined a contractor $42,000 for a trench collapse resulting in a worker death.

Source: Construction Dive

Davide Nascimento with his wife, Stephanie, and two children, Savanna and Cristiano.


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