Richard Johnson, 31 suffered fatal traumatic injuries on Monday, January 12, 2015 while working at Southwest Fabrication’s facility in Phoenix, AZ
It was the worker’s last shift at the company (he was moving on to a new job.)[His aunt alerted me that this report is incorrect.]
- “His clothes got entangled in a metal fabrication machine.”
- A former employee indicated he was involved in a serious incident at the plant in September 2014. ‘No one ever talked to me about safety or how to use the equipment. … ‘My shirt got caught around the spinning bar. I was pulled into the machine. Eventually, my shirt ripped off and I got free.’”
- The incident occurred around 8:30 am.
- The company, which has 50 employees, was cited in 2005 by Arizona OSHA for two safety violations.
Each year, about 100 workers in Arizona are fatally injured on-the-job. The Bureau of Labor Statistics reports 90 work-related fatal injuries in Arizona during 2013 (preliminary data, most recent available.) Nationwide, at least 4,405 workers suffered fatal traumatic injuries in 2013.
The AFL-CIO’s annual Death on the Job report notes:
- Arizona OSHA has 30 inspectors to cover more than 130,000 workplaces.
- The average penalty for a serious violation in Arizona is $891.
Arizona OSHA has until the end of mid-July 2015 to issue any citations and penalties related to the incident that stole Richard Johnson’s life. It’s likely they’ll determine that Johnson’s death was preventable. It was no “accident.”