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U.S. DOL Fines Two Grain Operators $1.4 million in Death of Two Teens

News Release
OSHA News Release: [01/24/2011]

MOUNT CARROLL, Ill. — The U.S. Department of Labor has fined Haasbach LLC in Mount Carroll and Hillsdale Elevator Co. in Geneseo and Annawan, Ill., following the deaths of three workers, including two teenagers. The workers were killed when they suffocated after being engulfed by grain.

“The tragic deaths of three people could have been prevented had the grain bin owners and operators followed the occupational safety standards and child labor laws,” said Secretary of Labor Hilda L. Solis. “It is unconscionable to allow a minor to work in any high-hazard area. Haasbach’s and Hillsdale’s disregard for the law and commonsense safety practices has led to devastation for three families.”

At least 25 U.S. workers were killed in grain entrapments last year, and the numbers of entrapments are increasing, according to researchers at Purdue University. There were more grain entrapments in 2010 than in any year since they started collecting data on entrapments in 1978.

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2 Teen Workers Trapped Inside Grain Bin Die in Illinois

MOUNT CARROLL, Ill., July 29, 2010

[This brings to 4 the number of young workers who died in grain silos in the Midwest this summer.from CBSNews.com:]


Rescuers Drain Thousands of Pounds of Corn to Free Trapped Workers from Bin in Ill.; OSHA Says Accident “Very Preventable”

(AP) A grain bin accident that left two teenagers dead and a third hospitalized could have been prevented and preliminary investigations found one worker was underage and employees lacked safety equipment, a federal Occupational Safety and Health Administration spokesman said Thursday.

“This was very preventable,” said OSHA spokesman Scott Allen in the Department of Labor’s Chicago office. “There are OSHA regulations that should have been followed and it appears they were not.”

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Families remember two teens who died in silo accident

[The Department of Labor is currently reviewing the agricultural hazardous orders. In 2002, NIOSH recommended expanding Hazardous Order #8 to prohibit all work in silos. If this recommendation is moved forward, teen workers in agriculture under 16 would be protected from silo dangers, which include suffocation and toxic gases . If the CARE Act were to pass and HO #8 is also enacted as recommended, then you would have to be 18 to work in a silo. ]

Families remember two teens who died in silo accident


July 13, 2010 5:53 PM
BARRY COUNTY, Mich. (NEWSCHANNEL 3) – New details are emerging about a tragic silo accident that killed two teens on Monday night.

17-year-old Franscisco Martinez and 18-year-old Victor Perez were inside the silo at Yankee Springs Dairy when they lost consciousness, they were pronounced dead after being taken out of the silo.

Newschannel 3 spoke with family of the victims on Tuesday.

The families say Frascisco Martinez had worked at the dairy for just a few months, while Victor Perez had been there for about three years.

“All I can say is I miss my son,” said Victor’s father Jose Perez. “I miss my son, everywhere I look I see him.”

Jose Perez says the last time he spoke to his son was Saturday night.

“I told him, just be careful, be careful with what you do,” said Jose.

Jose says Victor had just graduated from Thornapple Kellogg High School and was working at the farm full-time, he had just purchased a truck that he was going to fix up.

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