OSHA inspecting work site after truck driver's legs crushed by rig

By Clarissa Kell-Holland, Land Line staff writer | 2/15/2013

The U.S. Department of Labor’s Occupational Safety and Health Administration has opened an inspection after a truck driver’s legs were crushed while attempting to hook his tractor-trailer loaded with an earth-mover.

Andre J. Bowser, office of public affairs for the U.S. Department of Labor, confirmed that the agency has opened an inspection into the incident, which occurred around 11:30 a.m. on Wednesday, Feb. 13.

“The purpose of the inspection is to determine whether there were any workplace safety violations,” Bowser told Land Line on Thursday. “If the inspection identifies violations, citations and fines could be proposed for the employer.”

Andover Police Lt. William Ouellette told Land Line on Friday that the name of the driver still has not been released. He said that the driver was airlifted to Beth Israel Hospital in Boston. The driver, who works for J.F. White Contracting Co., of Framingham, MA, was working on a commuter rail project for the Massachusetts Bay Transportation Authority in Andover at the time of the incident.

According to The Eagle Tribune, it took emergency personnel nearly 25 minutes to free the driver from underneath the rear tires of the tractor, with the total weight of the tractor-trailer and earth-mover estimated at around 138,000 pounds.

In 2006, J.F. White Contracting was cited by OSHA for four repeat citations for fall, drowning and crane hazards related to another bridge construction project in Haverhill, MA. The company also was issued 10 serious citations for various safety violations, according to the OSHA news release. Two other contractors on the project were cited as well.