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News, Santa Monica, Government

Lieu Calls For Urgent Investigation Into LAX Safety Procedures

State Senator Ted W. Lieu.
Courtesy Photo
State Senator Ted W. Lieu.

Posted Mar. 15, 2014, 8:57 am

Mirror Staff

In the wake of the recent death of a 51-year-old baggage employee of contractor Menzies Aviation, State Senator Ted Lieu (Dem-28th District) has called for a state investigation into possibly unsafe working conditions at Los Angeles International Airport.

“This is a horrible tragedy and we must find out if this could have been prevented,” Lieu said after a press conference to shed light on the death of Cesar Augusto Valenzuela, who died three weeks ago in a single-vehicle accident at the busy airport, which is part of Lieu’s senate district. “Safety for millions of travelers through LAX starts with a safe workplace.”

According to reports, workers for Menzies Aviation have been injured in several incidents in recent years, and Lieu and other officials said they are concerned about possible shortcuts and cost-cutting steps that may have contributed toward airport work becoming unnecessarily dangerous.

A Feb. 25, 2014 story by the Los Angeles Times cited Cal-OSHA saying Menzies had been issued multiple citations last June totaling nearly $95,000 in proposed penalties for safety violations.

“The fact that this isn’t the first safety incident involving Menzies Aviation shows that there may be a dangerous pattern developing,” Lieu said. “No one should have to worry that their spouse won't come home from work because they were hurt or killed on the job.”

“Cesar (Valenzuela) and his family are counting on us to find the answers,” Lieu said.

For more, visit Lieu’s website at www.senate.ca.gov/lieu.

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