GRAND FORKS-A U.S. Department of Labor investigation into the March 29 death of a Grand Forks carpenter killed by electrocution found two serious safety violations related to electrical wiring at the work site where he was killed.
The North Dakota office of the Occupational Safety and Health Administration found three violations, two specifically related to insufficient precautions around electrical power circuits, at the new home construction site where 30-year-old Jared Castoreno was killed in Grand Forks.
Castoreno was killed by low-voltage electrocution that caused cardiac arrhythmia after coming in contact with an energized wire, according to an autopsy conducted at the UND Forensic Pathology Lab. He was found unresponsive behind a cabinet he'd been installing. Attempts to resuscitate him failed. The death was ruled an accident.
OSHA has leveled two violations categorized as "serious" and one violation labeled "other" against Civil Contracting Services, the Reynolds, N.D., company Castoreno was working for during the accident, and is currently seeking $13,691 in penalties, according to an OSHA report from Robert Labine, a lawyer representing Castoreno's family.
One serious violation pertained to allowing employees to work in close proximity to an electric power circuit without powering down the circuit. The second serious violation found Civil Contracting violated requirements to post sufficient labeling for its electric power circuits at the worksite and inform employees of potential hazards.
A third violation found the company did not properly instruct employees in the "recognition and avoidance of unsafe conditions".
Citations were issued against the company June 6.
OSHA's investigation into the death continues. Once it concludes, a full report on Castroreno's death will be released.
Civil Contracting Services has not responded to attempts to contact the company.
The Grand Forks Police Department closed its investigation into the death without recommending any criminal charges against the employer or homeowner.
Labine said his firm is continuing to investigate the death, and said it will engage in settlement talks in the future. Should those talks fail, a lawsuit may follow, he said.