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Concrete Firm Fined in Worker's Death

Posted July 16, 2007

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— State regulators have fined a Fayetteville concrete company in connection with the March death of one of its workers.

Barry Johnson, 50, was working in a large bin known as a sand hopper at the S & W Ready Mix Concrete Co. plant on Reilly Road on March 6 when sand somehow gave way and poured through a chute above his head and buried him, authorities said.

Crews had to work for about six hours to extricate Johnson's body from the sand pile.

The state Department of Labor recently fined S&W Ready Mix $6,300, citing 12 violations in connection with Johnson's death. The violations included failing to post signs or warn employees of the dangers of the equipment, failing to develop procedures to support rescue operations and failing to establish procedures to cut power to equipment while someone is inside.

The company has 15 days to contest the fine.


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  • Myword Jul 16, 2007

    I told you all this would happen in an earlier post...welcome to the NC Dept. of Labor...no teeth. no guts. ....well other people's guts...but not from the NCDOL. Cherry Berry is too busy being a pop icon.

  • then who cares Jul 16, 2007

    Now, they'll rest easy I guess; it could have been $6,300.25!! Why even fine them?!?! Just yell at 'em; it would have about the same affect!!

  • daMoFo Jul 16, 2007

    Sometimes accidents happen without anyone being negligent or irresponsible. Having men working in a deep, steep ditch without a box is negligent. Failing to cut power or have rescue procedures, if those things would have made a difference, possibly are negligent. Not posting signs? Do you really need a sign to tell you that climbing inside a sand hopper is dangerous?

    We read about construction acidents because construction is inherently dangerous. In truth, construction work in the US is far safer than in most other countries, but no amount of training or procedures will remove all the risk. And construction fatalities are pretty rare compared to the man hours being worked.

  • shine Jul 16, 2007

    Sometimes you can have all of the signs known and people still make decisions on their own. Not saying this happened here. I am sorry when anyone is taken in an accident - especially if it could be avoided.

  • Outlaw Subdivision 4-wheelers Jul 16, 2007

    I wouldn't worry about the piddly fine. I'm sure some lawyer will make sure they pay plenty more. Sadly enough the lawyer will get most of the money however.

  • dsdaughtry Jul 16, 2007

    a $6300 fine and thats all?? I honestly do not think that the company responsible will learn anything from this because the fine is so low.

  • grenlyn1 Jul 16, 2007

    I think the little bit of money the state collected for these fines should go to the family of the deceased. Then they should go to court and demand the actual cost they have endured from this loss such as the pay they do noy collect for the remainder of this man's life. If that were my husband, I'd own that plant!

  • terriersrfun Jul 16, 2007

    Wow, 12 safety violations and the death of a man are only worth $6300. Seems a little low to me! No wonder we keep reading about construction accidents.

  • Adelinthe Jul 16, 2007

    WOW!!! And all they needed was procedures and procedural training for this to have been avoided.

    We have procedures in place for everything, it seems, and training for parts of it monthly.

    Praying for the victim's loved ones and for the concrete firm to have learned their lesson well.

    God bless.

    Rev. RB

  • peace_of_mind Jul 16, 2007

    It's too bad a life had to be lost for this to happen.