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Wanzek cited in death of worker at wind energy site

August 13, 2015 | By Anthony Capkun

August 12, 2015 – Following the death of a 40-year-old crane operator in May 2015 at a wind energy site, Wanzek Construction of Nebraska (headquartered in North Dakota) was issued a serious safety violation for exposing workers to struck-by hazards.

OSHA’s investigation found the crane operator (who was not wearing a safety restraint) was operating a 90-ton rough-terrain crane when it slipped into a ditch, overturned and crushed him.

Wanzek was working on the Prairie Breeze Wind Energy Center for Invenergy near Elgin, Neb., when the incident occurred.

“At the beginning of each shift, construction vehicles in use must be inspected to ensure that they are in safe operating condition. This includes ensuring that vehicle restraint systems are in place and utilized by employees to ensure their safety when operating the vehicles,” said Darwin Craig, OSHA’s acting area director in Omaha.


OSHA’s proposed penalty is $7000.

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