Lehigh company fined by OSHA after death of employee Posted: Oct 18, 2016 11:30 AM EST Updated: Oct 18, 2016 5:52 PM EST
By Trent Kelly, Reporter
Zavarius "Zee" Philius
Man dies in 'workplace' incident at Lehigh concrete plant
LEHIGH ACRES, FL -
Oldcastle Coastal concrete company in Lehigh Acres, FL fined $25,000 after serious safety violations were uncovered at their plant following the death of Zavarious Philius, 23, who was crushed to death while cleaning a concrete mixer.
The Occupational Safety and Health Administration started an investigation after an employee of Oldcastle Coastal was killed on the job in April.
Zavarious Philius, 23, was crushed to death while cleaning a concrete mixer.
Micah Arnstrom is close friends with Philius' two younger brothers.
"It's really terrible that they had to go through something like that," Arnstrom said.
"I can't even imagine losing my younger brother."
It was a painful loss amplified after OSHA's 11-page report, first sent to the company last week, detailed three safety violations.
"I hope that this doesn't spark up too many more bad emotions or memories for them," Arnstrom said.
The report notes Philius was inside the mixer to clean it when it suddenly powered on. Investigators say the mixer was never "de-energized," meaning power was still flowing.
They also say the company's procedures never outlined the steps for shutting down those machines, adding the safety switches were not working.
"If something's not working, there should be protocols if those things aren't working," said C.J. Lustgarten, a neighbor who supports the fine levied on Oldcastle Coastal.
"No amount of money can equal the loss of a life," Lustgarten said.
Others believe the $24,942 fine should be much higher considering those violations cost someone their life.
"I think the fines should be way more up there," Arnstrom said. "They deserve some justice."
Oldcastle Coastal has until November 1 to contest the fines.
An OSHA spokesperson said so far, they haven't received any appeal from the company.
NBC2 reached out to Oldcastle Coastal but our calls were not returned.