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Police identify man killed in industrial accident at Torrance Casting in La Crosse

Published On: Jul 29 2013 03:23:38 PM CDT
Updated On: Jul 30 2013 09:46:54 PM CDT

WKBT, News8000.com

LA CROSSE, WI -

La Crosse police released more details in the industrial accident at Torrance Casting in La Crosse early Monday morning.

Eric Lecher, 40, was doing maintenance on a cold furnace when he fell into it head-first, police said.

Lecher is believed to have been in the furnace, which was off, for about an hour and a half before he was found by a co-worker.

When first responders arrived on scene at about 3:24 a.m. Monday, they attempted life-saving measures for about 40 minutes before declaring the man dead at the scene, police said. No foul play is suspected.

OSHA opened an investigation into the facility at Torrance Casting on Monday. OSHA has about six months to complete that investigation, which will look specifically at whether OSHA's health or safety guidelines were violated.

William Torrance, Torrance Casting's president released the following statement Tuesday afternoon:

"We are deeply saddened to announce that in the early morning hours of Monday, July 29, 2013, a valued Torrance Casting employee Eric Lecher, lost his life in a workplace accident. At the time of his death he was performing a routine maintenance lining repair on the inside of a cold furnace. The exact cause of his death is unknown at this time and will be determined by an autopsy.

Eric was a very hard-working and dedicated member of the Torrance Casting team since joining us on August 16, 2011. Since his start he held several positions and rapidly moved up the ladder to one of our highest skilled position, a Furnace Operator.

We ask that you join us in providing support and prayers for Eric's family.

He will be greatly missed."

PREVIOUS STORY:

A man working third shift at Torrance Casting in La Crosse died early Monday morning in an apparent industrial accident.

La Crosse police Captain Bob Lawrence said they received a report of an industrial accident just after 3 a.m.

Captain Lawrence said the man was working on a piece of equipment when he fell into it. Police and first responders tried to resuscitate the man, but he did not make it, Captain Lawrence said.

The victim's name is not being released yet, pending family notification.

A co-worker told News 8 after the accident, the plant was shut down but Torrance Casting said the some people were back to work this afternoon.

OSHA is investigating.

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