Wednesday, May 21, 2008


What do Ronald Wood & Carma Magnani have in common?

They were forced to join the ranks of 6,000 families who have had a loved on go to work never to be seen again. As if dealing with this loss and all it encompasses they have had to deal with the inept and the sometimes very cold system. Many in the OSHA system area are lacking in passion and emotion.

One would think that a job like OSHA inspection would be very gratifying job after all how many people can say they can help save life and limb? As we all know this is not how the job is looked at for the most part. It seems the job is just a pay check to most and emotion rarely enters the equation.

Ronald Wood lost his 22-year-old-son, Travis after falling 31 feet at ADS. ADS was originally fined $15,225 dollars, but with a protest OSHA cut the fine to $2,700.

Carma Magnani lost her her husband Ronald Magnani in 2004 at a Cryovac in an workplace incident. Cryovac negotiated the original OSHA fine of $3,500 to $1,500.Wood Both Wood and Magnani were appalled and surprised at the petty fines. Wood stated, “It's just unbelievable that they can actually get by with that small amount of money.” and Magnani said, “I mean, we're not talking about a finger. We're talking about a human life that was taken.”

So what reaction did OSHA have?

OSHA Spokesperson Jim Knight says its system works because accidents have dropped.
“With the system that we have in place, we are not to be a punitive agency. We are to identify hazards get the corrected and the goal is for a similar accident not to happen again. INFO BOX
S.C. Workplace Accidents by the Numbers:
Knight also says companies often spend more money after an accident to make its workplace safer.

Upstate U.S. Congressman Bob Inglis says companies get hit harder from higher workers compensation premiums than OSHA’s fines, “That insurance underwriting process is going to look at their claims experience on OSHA violations, and they're going to say, “Listen, you're obviously running an unsafe plant, so your premium fella is going up.”
The more these officials speak the more I think they are useless. So now we are suppose to rely on the workers compensation system and EPA (as in McWane). We the people actually have to rely on our government officials (at least the ones that care that their continuant's are dieing and maimed) to make OSHA do their job as in Combustible Dust and two that have made it to the Senate Full Committee Hearing - When a Worker is Killed: Do OSHA Penalties Enhance Workplace Safety? and Subcommittee Hearing - Serious OSHA Violations: Strategies for Breaking Dangerous Patterns.

Something is really wrong here, our tax dollars are going to this organization to do and job and not only is it lax but again our tax dollars are going out to hold these hearing. People are dieing while OSHA a few Government officials are passing the buck and they attempt to make this a political issue. I am so sick of hearing Republicans will not do this or will do that. It is not a political issue it is a matter of saving lives! You either care or you don't and I am sick to death of hearing all the lamb ars excuses.

Bush said yesterday he might veto a bill that would force federal regulators to write new rules regulating combustible industrial dusts, such as sugar dust, that can build up to hazardous levels and explode. The White House Statement of Administration Policy cited concerns over the timetable proposed in the bill, which would require OSHA to issue an interim final combustible dust standard within 90 days and a final standard within 18 months, calling it "unrealistic." (from E&E Daily subscription)
Why because of time constraints? Well lets see with this one issue (combustible dust) there were 3 incidents the year my brother was killed in 2003. In 206 the CSB had requested OSHA act, in March passed the House and now it is going to the Senate so they have had 5 years and OSHA has a plan to implement in the Voluntary Compliance program so when it comes down to it this excuse is just that an excuse. But one must ask what is the underling reason? We really need to get the answers out of our leaders. I mean some real tangible answers to why are families are allowed to go into unsafe workplaces. Why is it that our loved ones don't count and why someone can get away with killing our children, spouses and parents and negotiate a fine as small as $1,500. Dammit this is such crap and if I have to hear one more time that OSHA doesn't investigate the death but the violations I will puke. So investigate the violations but also get off your ass and figure out what lead to the incident so it doesn't happen again. Follow up not fall back. My advice is if your in it for the paycheck find another job because our families are not negotiable. You will hear from more families in the future because we have more at stake than you could ever imagine and we are mad as hell. The excuses are worn and our officials have to give us some straight answers.

You know I think I will start a contact campaign to start asking this questions? Then we can post them on the blog? We get better results if we ask in our own districts. So I will start in my own, lets see what they come up with.

Wish me luck!

And For the families that have lost a loved one at work, I am sorry for your loss and your in my prayers! God Bless.

OPPS, article complements of Andy Pierrotti work in Investigation: Discounted Lives

1 comment:

John Astad said...

You bring up some very good points and hopefully the combustible dust bill will pass muster in the Senate.

Reviewing data for 2003 there was 31 combustible dust incidents.
Here is a link to the data for 2003 in excel spreadsheet:

Since Imperial Sugar there has been 44 combustible dust fires and explosions.

The Chemical Safety Board has done an excellent job in in bringing forth an awareness of combustible dust hazards yet the data of 281 combustible dust incidents is only the tip of the iceberg. Off by over 78%

Extrapolating the recent combustible dust incidents in the last three months would equate to 3,600 combustible dust fires and explosions from 1980-2005.

The public's consciousness in conjunction with industry and governmental entities would be more aroused and concerned if the full extent of the complex issue was revealed. But no, lets stick with 281 combustible dust incidents rather than over 3,000

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