Lawsuit Alleges Lack of Machine Guarding Nearly Cut Employee in Half
Republished with permission from ReduceYourWorkersComp.com
A Florida lawsuit alleges that lack of machine guarding left an employee disfigured.
TheOrlando Sentinel reports, Edgardo Toucet Echevarria, 44, filed a lawsuit against Future Foam Carpet Cushion in Orange County, FL, following an incident on Jan. 13, 2010. (WCxKit)
Echevarria, a contract worker at Future Foam employed by Spartan Staffing, was asked by supervisors to remove a foam core from a “peeler machine” that has a steel blade used to cut blocks of carpeting foam, according to the lawsuit.
The suit alleges he wasn't trained in operating the machine, and in the course of removing the foam, the machine activated.
OSHA cited Future Foam for 10 serious violations, including two machine guarding violations, and proposed $42,500 in fines. Future Foam is contesting the fines.
The lawsuit claims employees had improperly removed a guard from the machine.
“The surgical sharp steel blade sliced through [his] pelvis … while virtually cutting his body in half,” the lawsuit claims. (WCxKit)
Echevarria is seeking punitive damages and more than $15,000 for disfigurement, loss of capacity for enjoyment of life, medical expenses, loss of earnings and loss of earning capacity.
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