Department of Labor Logo OSHA Regional News Brief - Region 7

Please note: As of January 20, 2021, information in some news releases may be out of date or not reflect current policies.


Aug. 12, 2015


Construction company cited in death of worker at wind energy site

Employer name: Wanzek Construction, 83763 527th Avenue, Oakdale, Nebraska. The company is headquartered in West Fargo, North Dakota.

Citations issued: The U.S. Department of Labor's Occupational Safety and Health Administration issued one serious safety violation to the company, which was received Aug. 10.

Investigation findings: One serious safety violation was issued for exposing workers to struck-by hazards following an investigation into the death of a 40-year-old crane operator on May 27, 2015.

The worker, 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 as it rolled off an embankment. He had been employed on the jobsite for only about 10 days.

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

Quote: "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. "Crushing and struck-by hazards are still one of the leading causes of construction-related incidents resulting in fatalities in the industry."

Proposed Penalties: $7,000

Link to citations:

To ask questions; obtain compliance assistance; file a complaint; or report amputations, eye loss, workplace hospitalizations, fatalities or situations posing imminent danger to workers, the public should call OSHA's toll-free hotline at 800-321-OSHA (6742) or the agency's Omaha Area Office at 402-553-0171.


Media Contacts:

Scott Allen, 312-353-6976,
Rhonda Burke, 312-353-6976,

Release Number: 15-1585-KAN

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