Deadly Bulldozer Accident in Georgetown, South Carolina

by | May 27, 2024 | Industrial Accident, Wrongful Death

There was a deadly incident at Santee Cooper Winyah Generating Station in Georgetown, South Carolina on May 23, 2024.  According to reports, a worker was on top of a coal mound at the power plant.  The mound of coal collapsed underneath, burying the bulldozer.  The victim has been identified as Cody Jordan.  Our thoughts and prayers go out to those impacted by this deadly incident.

Operating a bulldozer on a coal mound at a power plant involves significant risks, primarily due to the unstable and shifting nature of the coal pile. One of the major dangers is the risk of a coal slide or collapse. Coal mounds can be unpredictable; the material can shift suddenly, causing the bulldozer to become unstable or even buried. This poses a serious threat to the operator, who could be trapped or crushed. Ensuring that operators are trained to recognize the signs of instability and understanding the proper techniques for safely maneuvering on coal piles is essential for minimizing this risk.

Another significant hazard is the potential for equipment malfunction or failure due to the harsh conditions present on coal mounds. The abrasive nature of coal dust can cause rapid wear and tear on the bulldozer’s mechanical components, leading to unexpected breakdowns. This can be particularly dangerous if the equipment fails while navigating a steep or unstable section of the mound. Regular maintenance and inspections of the bulldozer are crucial to ensure that it remains in good working order and to prevent accidents caused by equipment failure.

Additionally, coal dust presents a respiratory hazard and increases the risk of fire and explosions. The fine particles can become airborne during bulldozer operations, posing inhalation risks to the operator and other workers nearby. Prolonged exposure to coal dust can lead to serious health issues, including respiratory diseases. Moreover, coal dust is highly flammable; a spark from the bulldozer’s engine or electrical systems could ignite the dust, leading to a fire or explosion. Implementing dust suppression measures, ensuring proper ventilation, and equipping operators with appropriate personal protective equipment (PPE) are critical steps in mitigating these risks.

There have been a number of incidents at industrial and manufacturing plants.  There was a fire at the RB Products petrochemicals plant in Scottsville, Texas on May 18, 2024.  There was a fire at the Bailey Omni plant in West Finley Township, Pennsylvania on May 21, 2024.  There was a transformer explosion at the Mount Ida Hydro Plant in Troy, New York on May 21, 2024.  There was an explosion at OHS Resources in Eastman, Georgia on May 22, 2024.

Those touched by an industrial accident should know their legal rights and remedies, and act quickly to preserve them. Our attorneys have extensive experience in cases involving industrial personal injury and wrongful death, including those caused by equipment malfunctioning.  The firm has experience in courts across the country and the skills needed to represent the families of loved ones who have lost their lives or as a result of an explosion, or been seriously injured.

The experienced attorneys at Spagnoletti Law Firm can help you understand your rights if you or a loved one was a victim of an industrial accident.  Please contact us online or call 713-804-9306 or to learn more about your legal rights.