Painting Firm Owner Charged in Pennsylvania Worker’s Death

July 20, 2012

The owner of a western Pennsylvania painting company has been charged with willfully violating federal workplace safety standards when one of his employees was electrocuted while painting the outside of a building near some power lines.

The federal Occupational Safety and Health Administration has already fined Modern Painting & Decorating, of Springdale, $57,900 for the electrocution death of 48-year-old Paul Thompson.

Now federal prosecutors in Pittsburgh say the company’s owner, 77-year-old Thomas Caruso, has been charged with willfully violating OSHA rules requiring workers to be protected from electric shock if they’re working near power lines.

Thompson, of Blawnox, was killed April 7, 2010, when he was hit by falling electrical wires while working near the building’s roof.

Caruso is scheduled to surrender before a federal magistrate in Pittsburgh on Aug. 7.

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