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Roofer fined after worker crushed to death in aerial lift

Roofer fined after worker crushed to death in aerial lift

A Florida roofing contractor is facing $63,900 in proposed penalties after one employee was crushed to death and another severely injured while removing rain gutters at a car dealership.

The U.S. Occupational Safety and Health Administration said 35-year-old Robert Heyman was killed and another unnamed worker for Sanford, Florida-based Tecta America Southeast L.L.C. hurt when the aerial lift they were using malfunctioned and pinned Mr. Heyman between its control panel and the edge of the roof, the agency said Thursday in a statement. His co-worker crawled out of the lift's basket and fell nearly three stories, suffering multiple fractures in his left leg, according to the statement.

The agency cited Tecta America Southeast for one repeated and four serious safety violations, including failing to provide a workplace free of recognized hazards, protect employees from unguarded machinery hazards, inspect aerial lift controls each day before use and protect workers from electrical hazards, according to the statement.

“Tecta America Southeast could have prevented this tragedy by simply inspecting the lift before allowing its workers to use it,” Brian Sturtecky, director of OSHA's Jacksonville, Florida, office, said in the statement. “This company must immediately address safety hazards at its work sites and be vigilant in the future to protect its employees from harm.”

A company spokesperson could not be immediately reached for comment.

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