Worker’s Fatal Fall Leads to Serious Hazards Found

Worker’s Fatal Fall Leads to Serious Hazards Found

An OSHA investigation into the fatal injuries suffered by an 86-year-old worker at a Henderson sawmill and pallet manufacturer found the company exposed workers to hazardous energy sources and lack of machine guarding.

OSHA opened the investigation on July 28th, 2021, after receiving a report that the worker had fallen form a stack of pallets on July 6th, 2021 at W.D. Townley and Son Lumber Company Inc.

The company was cited for willful violations for failing to use energy control procedures and implement a hearing conservation program, as required by law. The agency also issued citations for serious violations for lack of machine guarding, failing to use personal protective equipment, not addressing the hazards from operating powered industrial trucks, and neglecting to notify OSHA withing eight hours of a work-related fatality as required, These total fines added up to over $389k.

“Sawmill operation can be hazardous work, but it should not be life-threatening. W.D. Townley and Son Lumber Company Inc. showed a complete disregard for their employees’ well-being. OSHA will hold employers accountable when they neglect their legal responsibility to provide worker with a safe workplace.”

-Area Director Basil Singh, Dallas, TX.

Learn more about machine guarding, lockout/tagout procedures and powered industrial truck safety.