SEATTLE (Scrap Monster): Florence Hardwoods, LLC- a northern Wisconsin sawmill has agreed to pay $191K to federal regulators in settlement of a lawsuit that followed a teen’s death at the sawmill. In an incident reported this summer, a 16-year old boy named Michael Schuls was pinned in machinery and was reported dead two days later from injuries.
According to Florence County Sheriff’s Office, Schuls was trying to clear a jam in the wood-stacking machine, when the conveyor belt he was standing started to move, leaving him pinned. The investigation carried out by the U.S. Department of Labor revealed that the company had employed as many as nine children aged between 14 and 17 years to run machines. Furthermore, these child employees were made to work outside legally permitted hours.
Following the findings of the investigation, a civil lawsuit was filed by the federal regulator against the sawmill company.
As per the agreement, the authorities will lift the hot goods restrictions on the facility, in return for the payment of due fines. Florence Hardwoods will also have to place warning stickers on all dangerous equipment and warning stickers which says that children under 18 years of age are not permitted to work in the facility’s sawmill and planer mill. Moreover, it will have to co-operate with unannounced inspections by authorities.
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