Worker fatality at Loudon company under investigation
The Occupational Safety and Health Administration is investigating a worker fatality at Loudon’s Pleasant View Gardens.
Ronald Schlegel of Hooksett was the victim of an equipment-related accident about 3 p.m. Dec. 10. He was treated on the scene and taken to Concord Hospital where he later died, Pleasant View said in a statement. According to the state medical examiner’s office, he died from an injury suffered after he was pinned between a scissor lift and an overhead door.
The accident is under investigation by OSHA and local authorities, but neither OSHA nor Pleasant View would provide details about the possible cause.
“The company’s highest priority right now is to provide comfort and support to the family of the deceased and to Pleasant View’s employees,” said the statement, sent by national marketing manager Bill Riffey.
Schlegel, 31, was a logistics coordinator for the company, according to his obituary. He graduated from Manchester High School West in 2001, and his hobbies included hiking with his dog and playing football. Schlegel had one son. His parents, James and Dianne Schlegel, could not be reached for comment.
Pleasant View is a horticulture company that grows and sells plant material. In addition to the Loudon location, Pleasant View has a facility in Pembroke. The company has 120 year-round employees and roughly 250 during seasonal production. Schlegel’s death is the company’s first serious accident, according to the statement. OSHA’s online records do not show any investigations into Pleasant View before this accident.
OSHA rules say employers must report worker fatalities within eight hours of the occurrence. OSHA will then complete an on-site inspection and has up to six months to complete its investigation and issue a citation if necessary. Penalties can reach $7,000 for serious violations and $70,000 for willful or repeated violations.
“The company is fully cooperating with all investigative agencies and is committed to assuring a safe work environment for all of its employees,” Pleasant View’s statement said.
(Staff writer Megan Doyle contributed to this report. Kathleen Ronayne can be reached at 369-3390 or firstname.lastname@example.org or on Twitter @kronayne.)