Officials investigating death at DSM Chemicals plant in Augusta

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Local and federal agencies are investigating the death of a contract maintenance worker who was electrocuted Tuesday at the DSM Chemicals plant in Augusta.

A worker at DSM Chemicals plant in Augusta was working on electrical equipment when he came into contact with "live" electric service. He was transported to Medical College of Georgia Hospital where he was pronounced dead about 9:30 a.m. Tuesday.  Jackie Ricciardi/Staff
Jackie Ricciardi/Staff
A worker at DSM Chemicals plant in Augusta was working on electrical equipment when he came into contact with "live" electric service. He was transported to Medical College of Georgia Hospital where he was pronounced dead about 9:30 a.m. Tuesday.

Gold Cross Ambulance Service was called to the plant at 1 Columbia Nitrogen Road, off Sand Bar Ferry Road, at 8:54 a.m. for an electrocution, according to dispatch records.

The employee, identified as 41-year-old Stacy A. Fincher, of Saluda, S.C., worked for Austin Industrial as an electrician and was performing maintenance on electrical equipment when he came into contact with “live” electric service at 8:45 a.m., according to Richmond County Coroner Grover Tuten.

The victim was transported to Medical College of Georgia Hospital where he was pronounced dead about 9:30 a.m., the coroner said.

“In keeping with our policies regarding the health and safety of our employees and the environmental protection of the communities in which we operate, we are currently working with Austin Industrial and the relevant authorities to investigate and manage the incident,” said John Leonard, DSM’s vice president for administration. “No further details regarding its causes are yet known.”

Fincher had been an employee with Austin Industrial since 1992 and was contracted to the DSM site for the majority of his career, said Lori Brakhage, the director of corporate communication at Austin Industrial.

Austin Industrial has not had a recorded injury at the DSM site in the past million work hours, or the equivalent of slightly more than three years, Brakhage said.

The U.S. Department of Labor’s Occupational Safety and Health Administration office in Atlanta has also opened an inquiry into the accident, OSHA spokesman Mike Wald said.

“We have already sent a compliance officer from the Atlanta East office in Tucker, Ga.,” Wald said.

The agency’s policy is to open an investigation when a fatality occurs or when an accident results in three or more employees being injured, he said.

According to agency records, DSM has been involved in two investigations during the past five years, one in 2009 and one last January, but both were subsequently closed with no citations or violations.

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commonsense-is-endangere
43
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commonsense-is-endangere 09/13/11 - 01:39 pm
0
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Why censor the plant? We all

Why censor the plant? We all know who it is. Why protect the major polluter in the area?

happychimer
15289
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happychimer 09/13/11 - 01:58 pm
0
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One tv website has the name

One tv website has the name of the plant.

REDRIDER
134
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REDRIDER 09/13/11 - 02:25 pm
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DSM

DSM

broad street narrow mind
348
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broad street narrow mind 09/13/11 - 02:28 pm
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condolences to the worker's
Unpublished

condolences to the worker's family and friends.
this plant is a major polluter, isn't it? what are the odds that this town's leaders and authorities will find dsm at fault in this death? are there any influential people connected to this plant?

broad street narrow mind
348
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broad street narrow mind 09/13/11 - 02:29 pm
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the victim was taken to mcg.
Unpublished

the victim was taken to mcg. how was that decision made?

Vito45
-2
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Vito45 09/13/11 - 02:48 pm
0
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MCG is the Regional Trauma

MCG is the Regional Trauma Center. They have the tools to save such victims if they can be saved.

commonsense-is-endangere
43
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commonsense-is-endangere 09/13/11 - 02:51 pm
0
0
A foreign company (The

A foreign company (The Netherlands) allowed to pollute the CSRA

According to a report by Environment Georgia, the Savannah River received more than 7 million pounds of toxic pollution in 2007.
A report released today by Environment Georgia says the Savannah River is the most polluted river in the state and among the most polluted in the country.

The report used data from the EPA’s Toxics Release Inventory to analyze levels of dangerous chemicals found in Georgia’s waterways. That data showed that industrial facilities dumped more than 7 million pounds of toxins into the Savannah River in 2007.

More than 38,000 pounds of those chemicals are known to cause cancer.

According to the report, the number one polluter in the state that year was DSM Chemicals in Augusta. That company makes raw materials for plastics and dumped more than 3 million pounds of toxic waste into the Savannah river.

SCyankee
0
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SCyankee 09/13/11 - 02:52 pm
0
0
@broadstreet: have you worked
Unpublished

@broadstreet: have you worked with electrical anything?

SCyankee
0
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SCyankee 09/13/11 - 02:53 pm
0
0
it sure doesn't take much to
Unpublished

it sure doesn't take much to get you people off track does it!

two eyes
0
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two eyes 09/13/11 - 02:53 pm
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My condolences go out to my

My condolences go out to my fellow electrical worker and to his family. At this point my least concern is the pollution that this facility creates. Once again my prayers are with you my brother.

broad street narrow mind
348
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broad street narrow mind 09/13/11 - 02:59 pm
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i think some people may worry
Unpublished

i think some people may worry that lack of concern for our water and lack of concern for worker safety may go together. some may also worry that big players that go unpunished for one may also go unpunished for the other.

scrooster
0
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scrooster 09/13/11 - 03:42 pm
0
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His wife is a math teacher at

His wife is a math teacher at Batesburg-Leesville High School in South Carolina. She's a couple of months pregnant - they have other children as well. This is a real tragedy of the worst sort.

InChristLove
22407
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InChristLove 09/13/11 - 04:08 pm
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commonsense....the

commonsense....the information you are quoting was taken from a report for 2007 (4 years ago). Not sure if DSM is still this bad but seems to me a more up to date report should be used......this data could be misleading if DSM has cleaned up their facility since this report was published.

Sad that some individuals are more concerned about this company than this man's family. My condolences to his wife and children.

Sweet son
9526
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Sweet son 09/13/11 - 04:46 pm
0
0
To whoever that thought my

To whoever that thought my last comment was disrespectful to Deke's father you were mistaken. The LOL was meant for an earlier comment quoting figures on 38,000 pounds of chemicals that cause cancer. That comment seemed funny because it did not seem that the writer meant what was said. Thanks for the backup In Christ Love! Sympathies go out to the family!

DuhJudge
206
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DuhJudge 09/13/11 - 05:56 pm
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The amount of pollution would

The amount of pollution would be relative to the volume of production. The safety record is relative to the training and safety focus of management. Therefore you should all be proud that Augusta is home to the largest liquid fertilizer plant in the world and that their employees were able to produce safely for over a million hours. It is terrible that there was an accident and especially that an accident that resulted in death. The whole industrial community will respond and properly so. But with all the training and experience, bottom line is that accidents happen. Prayers for the family.

dougk
3
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dougk 09/13/11 - 06:14 pm
0
0
Hmmm...I really don't know
Unpublished

Hmmm...I really don't know anything about this...but, if what DuJudge says, is true...then, Augusta should be darned proud to be the home of the largest polluter in the world.

InChristLove
22407
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InChristLove 09/13/11 - 06:54 pm
0
0
dougk, I believe if you do

dougk, I believe if you do some research you will find that your last comment "home of the largest polluter in the world" is not a true statement.

dougk
3
Points
dougk 09/13/11 - 07:02 pm
0
0
I didn't say that, ICL. I
Unpublished

I didn't say that, ICL. I was following Duh Judge's logic....and, later, I realized that I SHOULD have said the largest fertilizer polluter in the world. I'm afraid that pollution is not my expertise, but as a resident it got my attention (i.e. pollution and production are postively correlated).

Boston93
117
Points
Boston93 09/13/11 - 07:07 pm
0
0
A very sad situation. My

A very sad situation. My prayers go to his family. Did not know Stacy personally, but worked at the plant for years and retired some 11 years ago. Accidents do and will happen regardless of how safe you try to work. I know for a fact that they have a super safety program and all employees are required to be certified in safety and I'm sure Stacy had most likely been educated on safety, but I will say that even with proper training, accidents will work their way into the situations. God Bless him.

E-reader
0
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E-reader 09/13/11 - 07:33 pm
0
0
DSM has an award winning

DSM has an award winning waste water treatment plant that is among the biggest privately funded unit of it's kind. You can easily see it on Google Map's satellite view. Using the word "dumped" conjures images of a few guys pouring barrels into the river. That is far from reality. They do everything within their power to clean the waste water before it re-enters the river. Thank DSM for that system. Before DSM the plant was operated for 25+ years without it. Pollution is hardly the reason to comment on this article though...

I don't know any more details than the rest of you reading this but it is worth noting that the accident happened at DSM South Center which is a newly acquired property a few hundred yards down the road from the DSM plant site. They are in the middle of remodeling the property to be used for a new lab site as well as a new training building amongst other things. Therefore he was not working in the actual production area of the plant. It isn't an area that people are readily familiar with like they are in the current plant site. Is that a contributing cause? I can't say. I'm sure more details will come out.

Before you go pointing fingers at the company please do a little research to keep from looking ignorant. This site had one of the best safety records in the entire country just last year. DSM is one of the most safety focused companies in the business. DSM and Austin Industrial employees passed 4 million combined man hours without a lost time injury a few months back. That means no one was injured on the job to the extent that they could not come back to work at their regularly scheduled time. That is extremely impressive. Like a few others said, it doesn't matter what preventative measures you put in place and how much training you do, accidents are going to happen. The fact that they went over 4 million man hours without a bad one is good. There is always room for improvement though and you can bet they will have a corrective action in place to prevent whatever happened to Stacy from happening again. It's sad to see something like this happen. My thoughts go out to his family.

traumaqueen
48
Points
traumaqueen 09/13/11 - 07:47 pm
0
0
A deep & tragic loss for many

A deep & tragic loss for many people. Thoughts & prayers to his family & friends. God Bless him & those left to mourn.

nevara67
0
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nevara67 09/13/11 - 09:08 pm
0
0
My prayers are with his

My prayers are with his family. Stacy was such a nice person. I feel for his wife and childern, his mom and dad, and his twin brother Tracy. I knew them when they were young. We rode the same bus and lived right down the road from them. God bless them and watch over them in thier time of need. Love Tina

Jake
31444
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Jake 09/13/11 - 09:26 pm
0
0
Don't know about the

Don't know about the pollution aspect of this plant but I know there is a woman tonight that has lost a husband and a father to their children. For this I am sad. My condolences to the Fincher family.

snakebite2004
0
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snakebite2004 09/13/11 - 10:40 pm
0
0
stacey fincher was a great

stacey fincher was a great man and a great person freiend and co worker. he will be missed by all of us here at DSM. My condoloscences go out to his wife who is 2 months pregnant with their first child in which they havce been trying to conceive for over 10 years now. and to his brother tracey, his father and mother, and to all the freinds and the family of workers we have out here at DSM CHEMICALS NORTH AMERICA. we are not just a company, they guys and girls that make this plant go, we are ALL family. My condolensces to the families once again. and to the person who is posting all this hog was about being a pollutant company......little secret between you and me...all that smoke you see comng up from the stack what you thinking is pollution..guess what....IT AINT NOTHING BUT STEAM, BOILED WATER. all of our polluting potential crap is contained in tanks and vessels and stored propoery. take the few extra minutes like you did to pull something from 4 yeras ago, and go down there and see what i saw. it is STEAM. you obvoiusly dont understand the stipulatoins and guidlines and safety procedures we have in place. Even with this accident, we are in the top 10 in the world. Not that it will bring stacey back but everyone can be their brothers keeper.

MATTERS2ME2
0
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MATTERS2ME2 09/14/11 - 07:22 am
0
0
Our Thoughts and Prayers are

Our Thoughts and Prayers are with all the Fincher family especially his wife and also with his Friends/Coworkers.

rendezvous
0
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rendezvous 09/14/11 - 08:28 am
0
0
It is a shame that someone

It is a shame that someone has lost his life, and so many people are more concerned about pollution (which has nothing to do with his death). Please everyone take the time to send your condolences to the victims family instead of spending your time debating on the pollution.. My heart and prayers go out to the victims family.

Peachy
0
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Peachy 09/14/11 - 10:51 am
0
0
HELLOOOOO!!!!!!! This is

HELLOOOOO!!!!!!! This is ridiculous. Have alot of you lost all sense of humanity. The point that this plant is a polluter or not is not what matters at this time. The story wasn't put in the paper for any opinions on its pollution to our area. It was to inform everyone that a man has lost his life doing his job at this specific plant. There is a family who has lost a husband and father. This man lost his life doing his job to support his family. "Never take one single breath for granted".. We have all lost loved ones in some time in our lives, so I'm sure you know the feelings that this family is dealing with and will deal with for a while. My prayer and love goes out to this family. PLEASE HAVE SOME RESPECT FOR THIS FAMILY.

woodd
0
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woodd 09/14/11 - 12:01 pm
0
0
Peachy, Thank you so much for

Peachy,

Thank you so much for bringing down to earth, all those individuals who did not even consider that poor man's fate. A loss of life is devastating to all those close to him. I pray for his wife and unborn child. He will never be replaced. Keep him close to your heart. Take care and God bless.

skinn42
0
Points
skinn42 09/14/11 - 12:18 pm
0
0
this is no time to agrue

this is no time to agrue about pollution who is or who is not the worst company. this should be a time of mourning for all worked with him and especially his family. my brother works down there and my husband and father retired down there with more than 70 years employed between the three and very few accidents have ever been heard coming from down there. my husband works for a different company now but was down there and had just spoken to this fellow, my husband said it just did not seem real. just goes to show you that you never know when it might be your turn to go home. forget pollution and remember Stacy and his family especially. he was a good man and father. i am sure it was an accident and no fault should be laid to blame on the company or its employees. God Bless You STACY and YOUR FAMILY we all LOVED YOU!

haywire67
0
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haywire67 09/15/11 - 09:39 am
0
0
Some things never change. At

Some things never change. At this moment in time, who cares if the DSM plant is an environmental issue to some. That is completely irrelevant to the issue at hand. Stacey Fincher was an employee who died on the job. Think of his family and pregnant wife, who are suffering from the loss of their loved one. Stacey was a loving husband, a brother, a son, and a great friend. He will be sorely missed by many. RIP Stacey

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