The life of Marco Antonio Silva could have been spared if his employer had followed safety guidelines and residential energy provider Eversource had disconnected a power line, according to a lawsuit filed by his family in Connecticut Superior Court in Danbury.
Silva, 44, was a private contractor employed at KTI Utility Construction & Maintenance. The electrocution occured June 9, 2016, as Silva was preparing a work site for the installation of a new utility pole. The equipment he was operating came into contact with a high-voltage transmission line, which caused a jolt of electricity to surge through his right arm and into his chest. He was rushed to a nearby hospital where he was pronounced dead.
The lawsuit, represented by Silva’s widow, Nara Rodrigues-Feitosa, claims that the accident was easily preventable, laying blame on KTI Utility Construction. An investigation into the death by the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) resulted in the company being hit with two serious violations of safety and health regulations, including failure to operate mechanical equipment a safe distance from an exposed power line and failure to task an employee with ensuring that a safe distance was observed while the job was in process.
The drilling contacting company was originally fined $2,800, but in August 2016, the company reached a settlement agreement with OSHA, resulting in a reduced fine of $2,000 and the company creating a plan to implement training and better safety practices among its employees.
Eversource was also named in Silva’s wrongful death lawsuit for routinely deliberately choosing not to de-energize its lines during construction activity.
The lawsuit seeks financial compensation for Silva’s death, the loss of his lifetime earnings and wages, and pain and suffering.
Source: The Hour