Milton “Tito” Rafael Barreto Hernandez work-related death could have been prevented. That’s how I see the findings of Federal OSHA in the agency’s citations against his employer, Scott Materials (Central Rock Corporation/ Southwinds Express Construction.) The 22-year-old was working in October 2014 at the company’s concrete crushing facility in Scott, Louisiana. The initial press reports indicated Hernandez and a supervisor were trying to remove debris that was jamming up a conveyor belt. The equipment was turned back on and Hernandez was pulled into the machine. I wrote about the incident shortly after it was reported by local press.
Inspectors with federal OSHA conducted an inspection at the facility following the fatal incident. The agency recently issued citations to the firm for three serious and one other-than-serious violation and proposed a $22,000 penalty. Among others, Scott Material was cited for failing to have an effective lock-out/tag-out program (1910.147(c)(4)(i)) and to ensure that workers are trained on it (1910.147(c)(7)(i)).
When some local press initially reported Milton “Tito” Rafael Barreto Hernandez’s death, they called it an accident. An “accident” suggests the circumstances were unforeseen or could not have been avoided. OSHA’s findings tell a different story. Call it cutting corners, call it poor management, call it breaking the law. Whatever you want to call it, Milton “Tito” Rafael Barreto Hernandez’s work-related death could have been prevented, it was no accident.