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FL: Employers Responsible for Electrocutions

Fort Meyers Beach, FL: About five months after the deaths of two maintenance workers on Fort Myers Beach, their employers have received safety citations that could cost them thousands of dollars.

Juan Bocanegra, 37, of Fort Myers, and Dustin Manning, 30, of Bradenton, were electrocuted in September when the basket of a cherry picker they were standing in struck a power line. The men were hired to remove molding damaged by woodpeckers at Bella Lago condos, off Bay Beach Road on Fort Myers Beach.

On Feb. 25, the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) found the two companies that employed the victims to be in violation of several safety policies, according to citations sent out by the organization.

OSHA recommended J Baller Construction, a Fort Myers-based company that employed Bocanegra, pay $11,900 for four violations. According OSHA’s citation, J Baller did not provide its employees accident prevention training, it did not train the aerial lift operator in the hazards of working near energized power lines, and it allowed employees to work in proximity to power lines. OSHA also found Bocanegra was not wearing a safety belt at the time of the accident.

OSHA recommended a $5,600 fine for Cutting Edge Molding, a Sarasota-based company, because Manning was not wearing a safety belt and the company did not instruct its employees in the importance of using fall protection equipment.

Both companies have contested the proposed violations and will have a hearing before the OSHA review commission, according to spokesman Michael D’Aquino.

OSHA citations give recipients the right to contest violations within 15 working days of notification.

Story via news-press.com

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