Arc Flash & Electrical Safety News

Blog Author Steve Hudgik

Wednesday, March 12, 2008

WE Energies To Pay Damages In Plant Accident

The Milwaukee Journal Sentinel reports today on the court judgment resulting from an arc flash injury at the Patrick Cudahy meat packing plant.

The article reports that Neil Wolf was injured by an arc flash on May 26, 2003, at the Patrick Cudahy plant. The jury awarded $515,000 to Mr. Wolf.

WE Energies, the local power company, was found to be 37% negligent and will have to pay $190,550 of the award.

Patrick Cudahy was found to be 55% responsible. But because Patrick Cudahy was a plaintiff, not a defendant in this case, they will not need to pay any of the jury award.

Mr. Wolf was found to be 10% responsible.

You can read the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel article at: http://www.jsonline.com/story/index.aspx?id=727274

OSHA imposed $148,500 in fines in December 2004. The following is what OSHA reported at that time:

"Three workers were reported to have been troubleshooting electrical switchgear at the Cudahy, Wis., facility when electricity arched and exploded. OSHA's investigation revealed that the three workers, all of whom received first, second and third degree burns throughout their bodies, were not using insulated tools, were not wearing proper personal protective equipment, and were not following appropriate safety standards. OSHA issued willful and serious violations to Cudahy for allegedly failing to provide such equipment, and warning or training the workers about flash hazards."

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