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Worker's Leg Crushed In Ox Paperboard Accident

WEST CARTHAGE, N.Y. (From news reports) -- A West Carthage paper mill was shut down after a worker at Ox Paperboard had his leg crushed by a roll of paper early Tuesday morning (Nov. 20).

Sources say the worker is a young male, in his 20s, who has worked at the mill for about a year. He was taken to a Syracuse hospital.

Jack VanderBaan, a spokesman for the United Steel Workers union said this incident "truly appears to be an accident." VanderBaan continued, saying, "The new company is doing everything it can to keep the employees safe while at the mill."

Ox Paperboard recently bought the mill, which used to be called Carthage Specialty Paperboard.

Carthage Specialty Paperboard was cited by the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) in August 2017 with 61 safety and health hazards and faced a fine of $357,445.

In August, OSHA described the violations as "machinery in the mill did not have safety locks to prevent the accidental start-up of machinery during maintenance, and employees did not receive required training or Personal Protective Equipment to work on electrical systems with up to 2,300 volts."

CSP, owned at the time by investment firm DeltaPoint out of Rochester, agreed with OSHA to pay $175,000 in penalties and to make safety improvements.

"This was not caused by something not guarded," said VanderBaan of Tuesday's accident.

When the accident happened at 5:30 a.m. Tuesday, and the operations manager shut down the mill for safety concerns.

Corporate officials with OX Industries, Pennsylvania, are making their way to West Carthage to meet with the second shift at 7:30 p.m. to stress safety with hopes of restarting the mill late Tuesday night.

Officials said OSHA was on scene to begin its inspection.

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