Contracting company fined in Valero Renewable Fuels worker death

Local News

BLUFFTON, Ind. (WANE) – WANE 15 has learned the company a contractor was working for at Valero Renewable Fuels plant in Bluffton has been fined for his death. Diversified Industrial Services LLC has been fined $21,000 in relation to the death of 42-year-old Ryan West of Bainbridge, Ohio.

Indiana Occupational Safety and Health Administration provided WANE 15 with the Safety Order and Notification of Penalty.

According to the document, Diversified Industrial Services was fined by the Indiana Department of Labor after an inspection for three different serious infractions.

The three infraction involve an employee being exposed to hazards when lockout procedures were not in place. Diversified Industrial Services was fined $7,000 for each infraction, totaling $21,000.

The document states the violations are currently in abatement, meaning the infractions must be corrected before a certain date. Diversified Industrial Solutions has until October 11th to make those corrections, unless a petition is filed.

On June 19th, 2019 police and medics were called to Valero Renewable Fuels on a report of an industrial accident. Bluffton Police Chief Kyle Randall told WANE 15 emergency crews responded and found West trapped inside a piece of equipment.

West was working for an outside contractor, Diversified Industrial Services, and not a direct employee for Valero, according to Valero.

Read: Prior serious safety violations at Bluffton plant where worker killed

IOSHA tells WANE 15 Valero operates under the parent umbrella of Diversified Industrial Solutions. WANE 15 is working to clarify what Diversified Industrial Services is to Valero.

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