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Ohio man killed in train yard accident after complaints of unsafe work conditions

Ohio authorities have identified the steel plant worker who was killed in an accident at the plant's train yard last Friday.

The accident happened at Republic Steel in Lorain, Ohio. The victim, a 62-year-old man from Brownhelm, Ohio, worked for Republic for forty-five years, according to his wife.

The man was said to be hanging on to a moving rail car when he became stuck between it and a parked rail car. He was pronounced dead at the scene of the accident and an autopsy completed on Saturday confirmed that he died from multiple crush wounds.

A Republic Steel spokesperson issued a statement on Friday evening, telling reporters that the company is cooperating with the wishes of local authorities and with its own risk management assessors in an effort to determine exactly what happened, why the man was positioned in such a way, and how to prevent similar accidents in the future.

However, the victim's wife responded by telling reporters that her husband had been complaining of safety conditions at the train yard in the months leading up to his death and that he told her, "Somebody's going to get killed out there." The man's son said that the man had complained about the safety conditions to him as well, telling his son that he felt the train cars were out of date and not receiving the proper maintenance.

Friends and family say that the victim was a selfless family man who loved cars, never missed his grandchildren's sporting events, and left a lasting impression on everyone he met. As Toledo OSHA continues to investigate the accident, family members and friends are left asking themselves if this tragedy could have been avoided had the man's wishes for safer work conditions been met.

Source: WKBN, "Worker killed at Ohio steel plant identified" 17 February 2014

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