Friday, November 19, 2010

OSHA issues minimal fine in fatal Texas gas pipeline accident

WASHINGTON - The U.S. Occupational Safety and Health Administration has fined a Canadian, Texas, accidents, pipeline accidents, gas pipeline accidents construction firm $7,000, claiming the violations that resulted in the deaths of two employees were "serious."
OSHA levied two fines -$3,500 each - against Nick Thomas Inc. of Canadian for its role in a June 8 natural gas pipeline explosion that killed two people near Darrouzett, Texas, in Lipscomb County.
The agency cited Nick Thomas Inc. for not locating the underground pipeline before beginning excavation in a caliche pit, according to OSHA. The agency also cited the company for not notifying utility companies of its intentions to dig in the pit, or asking those utilities to locate underground infrastructure, OSHA said.
Johnnie Mike Renner, 44, and Steven Douglas Odell, 32, both of Pampa, Texas, were killed when a ripper on the back of a bulldozer they were using to dig caliche struck a 14-inch natural gas line about two miles outside of Darrouzett.
A ripper is a clawlike steel hook used to loosen rocks and soil, much like a plow would do, but at greater depth.

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