FL Shipyard Builder Cited in Fatal Drowning Accident

JACKSONVILLE, FL – OSHA has cited North Florida Shipyards Inc., a shipbuilding and repair company, after an employee suffered fatal injuries at its Commodores Point facility in Jacksonville, Florida, on Jan 21 this year. The shipyard faces $271,061 in proposed penalties.

34-year-old Padmore Atakorah drowned after a pressured air manifold struck him and knocked him into the St. Johns River.

A co-worker reported seeing Atakorah working on a pressure valve at the East Adams Street facility before hearing a loud noise, according to the original police report. The co-worker next saw him in the river and tried to throw a rope several times, but he disappeared. Police, rescue, dive and helicopter teams searched but could not find Atakorah.

Then, on Feb. 2, an employee at Keystone Properties at 1915 Wigmore St. spotted a body in the river, and two police marine units retrieved it. The Medical Examiner’s Office confirmed his identity.

Atakorah was completing a mechanical engineering degree when he died and after having served in the U. S. Navy for nine years, according to his obituary.

OSHA has cited the employer for safety violations, including: