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Plant Manager Gets Prison in Worker Death Cover-Up

They lied during the investigation and tried to strong-arm subordinates.

On October 30, 2012, an industrial accident at North Jackson, OH-based aluminum manufacturing company Extrudex killed 21-year-old John Tomlin Jr. A rack containing 4,000-5,000 pounds hot aluminum parts tipped over and pinned the employee in an oven. The rack was reportedly being pushed on a roller conveyor system, and a co-worker was seriously injured as well.

62-year-old Brian K. Carder and 57-year-old Paul Love pleaded guilty to conspiracy to obstruct justice charges. Last week, the pair of plant managers were officially sentenced for their role in the incident, specifically lying during the investigation and trying to strong-arm subordinates. 

The Department of Labor's Office of Inspector General's investigation found that Carder and Love tried to hide information and intimidate workers from speaking to OSHA investigators.

Carder's sentence carries three years of probation; however, the first five months include weekend only confinement -- that means he goes to jail on the weekends for five months, typically you go in on Friday night, and you're released on Monday morning. Carder was also ordered to pay a $20,100 fine. Love also received three years probation, including three months of house arrest and a $1,100 fine. 

According to the indictment, Carder and Love told subordinates that their jobs might be in jeopardy as a ploy to get them to recant previous emails about safety issues at the plant.

In a settlement with OSHA, Extrudex Aluminum accepted one willful and seven serious citations and agreed to pay a $112,000 penalty.

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