Atlantic Coast utilities charged with perjury in construction accident that killed 2 workers – NBC Boston
Atlantic Coast Utilities and two people affiliated with the company have been charged with perjury in connection with an accident earlier this year where two of their employees died when they were hit by a dump truck and pushed into a 9 foot deep trench at a sewer project in Boston.
Atlantic Coast Utilities was charged with four counts of perjury last week, Suffolk District Attorney Rachael Rollins announced Tuesday. Laurence Moloney, 57, of Quincy, owner of the business, was also charged with three counts of perjury and Konstantinos Kollias, 35, of Newton, an employee of the business, was charged with one count of perjury .
Prosecutors allege the company lied on workplace safety affidavits submitted to the city of Boston. Those affidavits were on file when Atlantic Coast Utilities obtained permits to carry out work on High Street in Boston’s Financial District, where two of its employees — Jordy Alexander Castaneda Romero, 27, and Juan Carlos Figueroa Gutierrez, 33 — were killed when hit by a company vehicle on February 24, 2021.
The company allegedly said in the affidavits that it had no prior Occupational Safety and Health Administration violations when, in fact, it was cited by the agency in 2016 and 2019.
Moloney and Kollias are due in court Wednesday in Suffolk County Superior Court. Prosecutors said additional information about the case would be released at that time.
OSHA had cited Moloney and two associated companies in August for what it called “a long history of ignoring the safety and health of its employees.” The dump truck driver was not held criminally responsible for the men’s deaths, Rollins said.
Two workers have died after a dump truck crashed into a construction site.
OSHA, in a statement, said the violations included “the company’s refusal to train Romero, Gutierrez and other workers to recognize and avoid job-related hazards.”
Atlantic Coast Utilities “failed to perform job site inspections to identify and correct hazards, including risks of being struck by construction vehicles and other vehicles, run over or engulfed in an unguarded trench, and being overwhelmed by oxygen-depleted or toxic atmospheres in the trench and adjacent manhole,” OSHA said.
Atlantic Coast Utilities said in a statement earlier this year that it was “devastated” by the deaths and continues to grieve.