Jose Lomas Killed in Work Accident on Montana Ave. in El Paso, TX
El Paso, TX -- July 28, 2022, Jose Lomas sustained fatal injuries around 11:00 a.m. due to a work accident involving a reported roof collapse in El Paso.
Preliminary details released by OSHA said that the incident happened at a job site along the 9700 block of Montana Avenue. 41-year-old Jose Lomas was on a roof at the time. It appears that the roof somehow "gave way," causing Lomas to go through the roof and fall. As a result, Jose Lomas sustained a fatal head injury.
In their statements, OSHA listed two particular standards which they allege this employer violated. One of them is in regards to safety equipment during roofing operations meant to prevent falls. That alone is concerning, and it's important to find if the evidence can confirm that allegation. But the other alleged violation is rather unique. It says:
Prior to permitting employees to start demolition operations, an engineering survey shall be made, by a competent person, of the structure to determine the condition of the framing, floors, and walls, and possibility of unplanned collapse of any portion of the structure. Any adjacent structure where employees may be exposed shall also be similarly checked. The employer shall have in writing evidence that such a survey has been performed.OSHA Standard 1926.850(a)
This raises some serious questions. The obvious possibility of concern is the employer not having anyone inspect the structure, leading to this fatal accident. However, another possibility is that the employer did order an inspection, the but inspector screwed up and failed to point out a deadly hazard. Did OSHA consider that possibility, or were they simply content to recommend possible fines and move on? I can only hope the information the victim's loved ones are getting are telling a more complete story than what the public gets to see. There could be important issues which have yet to be addressed.