Jury awards $144,511 to Livermore worker injured at biomass plant

Posted Sept. 26, 2013, at 2:16 p.m.

LEWISTON, Maine — On Sept. 18, an Androscoggin County Superior Court jury awarded $144,511 to a worker injured on the job five years ago at a biomass plant in Livermore Falls.

Brian Rackliff, 38, of Livermore was working at what was then the Boralex biomass plant in 2008 when he fell through a temporary hole on an elevated floor used for hoisting machinery at the facility, Michael Bigos, Rackliff’s attorney, told the Bangor Daily News.

Rackliff was able to prevent himself from falling 70 feet to the floor below, but he suffered shoulder and leg injuries that required multiple surgeries, said Bigos, a lawyer at Berman & Simmons in Lewiston.

The plaintiff in the case was not Boralex, but an outside contractor, Castine Energy Construction, that had cut the hole in the floor, Bigos said. Castine Energy created the hole in the floor for hoisting purposes, but failed to cover it when it was not being used and failed to provide guardrails around it in violation of OSHA regulations, Bigos said.

Bigos said he does not expect an appeal.

“This is the end as far as I know,” he said.

Boralex no longer owns the biomass facility where the accident took place. In 2011, it sold the four biomass facilities it owned in Maine to Albany, N.Y.-based ReEnergy Holdings.

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