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Westmoreland fuel company cited for 18 safety violations

| Wednesday, Feb. 27, 2013, 12:09 p.m.

The U.S. Department of Labor's Occupational Safety and Health Administration has cited a Westmoreland County fuel company for 18 safety violations following the death of a worker who was crushed by a pavement roller last August.

Proposed penalties against Export Fuel Co. total $41,300.

Mechanic Robert Edward Buskey Jr., 55, of Robinson Road, Loyalhanna Township, was working on the roller's engine when it unexpectedly started and drove over him on Aug. 28, state police said.

Buskey was pronounced dead at the scene. Export Fuel is on York Lane, off Route 66 in Salem Township.

The county coroner's office reported Buskey, who was pinned under the roller, died from multiple blunt-force injuries to the head, neck, chest and abdomen. The manner of death was ruled accidental.

“Training workers to recognize and address hazards is essential, and Export Fuel failed to train its workers on the operation and maintenance of the pavement roller, which ultimately led to a worker's death,” said Christopher Robinson, director of the OSHA Pittsburgh Area Office.

“It is the employer's responsibility to provide a safe workplace by finding and fixing hazards, so all workers are protected,” he said.

The serious violations include fall and electrical hazards, lack of machine and equipment guarding, lack of energy control procedures, failure to provide employee training in the maintenance and operation of construction vehicles, and a safe exit and means of egress.

A serious citation is issued by the federal agency when there is substantial probability that death or serious physical harm could result, and the employer knew, or should have known, of the hazard.

Export Fuel has 15 business days from receipt of the citations to comply, request an informal conference with the OSHA area director in Pittsburgh, or contest the citations and proposed penalties before the independent Occupational Safety and Health Review Commission.

Export Fuel was established in 1956 and provides residential, industrial and commercial services, including home heating fuel, diesel and kerosene, according to the company's website.

Paul Peirce is a staff writer for Trib Total Media.

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