Thursday, November 28, 2013

Black Mag CEO, Sanborn, Sentenced for Manslaughter

On May 14, 2010 Fox News reported that two people were killed after three explosions rocked a black powder gun factory at the MDM Muzzleloader plant in Colebrook, N.H., a town of roughly 2,000 residents near the Vermont border.

From ReliablePlant.Com:

"Two workers and a plant supervisor were manufacturing a gun powder substitute known as Black Mag powder when the explosion occurred. The workers had been required to hand feed powder into operating equipment due to the employer’s failure to implement essential protective controls. The employer also chose not to implement remote starting procedures, isolate operating stations, establish safe distancing and erect barriers or shielding – all of which are necessary for the safe manufacture of explosive powder. Additionally, the employer chose not to provide the personal protective equipment and other safety measures its employees needed to work safely with such hazardous material. OSHA cited the company with four egregious willful, 12 willful, 36 serious and two other-than-serious violations."

Also, according to the OSHA report, the factory failed to prohibit smoking or institute the most basic of safety and security measures.

On June 29, 2011 the Department of Labor issued a news release which stated that as part of an agreement with Black Mag Industries and Craig Sanborn (the company's president, managing member and primary owner) have surrendered Black Mag LLC's explosives manufacturing license and will permanently refrain from employing workers in any explosives-related business enterprise. Black Mag LLC and Sanborn also agreed to the entry of a "summary enforcement order" in the U.S. Court of Appeals. Violation of such an order would permit the department to initiate proceedings for contempt of court, in which potential sanctions could include incarceration to secure compliance. (Black Mag, which is no longer in business, also received a $1.2 million penalty.)

2 years and 5 months later, on November 27, 2013 the Department of Labor issued another news release regarding the sentencing of Craig Sanborn in Coös County Court in New Hampshire for manslaughter in connection with the May 2010 explosion at the Black Mag LLC plant, which killed employees Jesse Kennett and Don Kendall while they were manufacturing a gunpowder substitute. Sanborn was sentenced to five to 10 years on two counts of manslaughter, to be served consecutively, for a total of 10 to 20 years, and assessed him fines of $10,000.

Assistant Secretary of Labor for OSHA, Dr. David Michaels, said in the statement:

"The disregard for safety cost two workers their lives, and this jury agreed that Craig Sanborn's actions were criminal. Sanborn recklessly ignored basic safety measures that would have protected their lives. His criminal conviction and sentence won't bring these men back to life, but it will keep him from putting workers' lives in peril. And it should drive home to employers this message: Worker safety can never be sacrificed for the benefit of production, and workers' lives are not — and must never be — considered part of the cost of doing business. We categorically reject the false choice between profits and safety."

The Republicans would like to de-fund, under-fund or eliminate the Department of Labor and OSHA so that businesses like this in the U.S. (as in countries like Bangladesh) can operate with total impunity; and that's also why the GOP would also like "tort reform", so that American citizens would not be able to sue businesses like this who break the law. The Republicans also say that regulations (governing businesses like this) makes them "less competitive in the global market".

No comments:

Post a Comment