Burlington company faces fines for worker deaths

RALEIGH, NC (AP) -- The North Carolina Labor Department has fined a Burlington construction company for safety and health violations in the deaths of two workers in Durham.

The News & Observer of Raleigh reported that Triangle Grading and Paving Inc. is being fined $16,000 for the deaths of two company employees June 7.

Thirty-four-year-old Luis Castaneda Gomez of Durham and 32-year-old Jesus Martinez Benitez of Clayton died inside an 11-foot-deep manhole while working on Durham's water system.

The Labor Department cited the company for four serious violations. The citations say the men suffocated, and the company had not taken proper precautions to ensure there would be enough oxygen in the hole.

There was no immediate reaction from the company, which has 15 working days to respond.

(Copyright 2011 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)

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