The Occupational Safety and Health Administration, will investigate the April 11, 2011, death of Thomas W. Means, a construction worker, who was killed when he fell off a small underground locomotive in a tunnel 16 stories below ground, deep under Lake Ontario.
The Occupational Safety and Health Act was created by Congress and became law in 1970. Its' mission is to prevent work-related injuries, illnesses, and occupational fatality by issuing and enforcing standards for workplace safety and health.
Over the years it has brought about change in industrial safety practices, in areas which may be relevant to this matter, including working in "confined space" and "excavation and trenches".
According to reports, Mr. Means was run over by the locomotive. He was part of a five man crew, tunneling through bedrock, as part of a Monroe County Water Authority project designed to boost the production capacity of the system. The mini-railway is used to remove rock debris from the area cleared by the rotating drills, which will eventually tunnel 6,000 feet.
Whether there was a "wrongful act, neglect or default" [required for a viable wrongful death action] which caused or contributed to Mr. Means death remains unclear, pending interview of any witnesses to the accident, and completion of the OSHA investigation.