The death of one of its employees last year led to Ocean Woods Landscaping in Hilton Head, South Carolina being issued fines for serious worker safety violations.
The South Carolina Department of Labor, Licensing and Regulation ordered the landscaping firm to pay $3850 after it was inspected by the state’s OSHA department. The two violations found were determined to have led to the death of a 20 year old worker named Marcos Garcia Servin.
The fatal workplace injury occurred when the worker was unloading palm trees off a flatbed tractor trailer. The trees shifted and knocked Servin off the rig. One of the palms then fell on top of him. He died later that day at a hospital in Savannah GA.
According to state inspectors, the Freightliner tractor trailer did not have the necessary support fixtures to secure the load of trees. They also noted that the company should have known that the load of trees was unstable and had to be better secured.
Another violation was the failure to replace worn rigging material; the synthetic web sling that was used to take off the palm trees had snags, cuts and tears. Regulations mandate that these slings that be replaced when they are damaged.
As wrongful death attorneys in Virginia, we know that this accident is one that never should have happened. All companies have a responsibility to provide a safe working environment for their employees. However, through neglect or a desire to save money, some necessary safety equipment is not updated or replaced, sometimes leading to serious injuries and death.
Given the fact that South Carolina regulatory authorities have found the company at fault, the grieving family should consider filing a wrongful death lawsuit, as this case has a large settlement potential. At the very least, they would have funds to compensate them for their pain and suffering, as well as for the man’s future lost earnings.