Plant worker crushed to death by tons of marble

Federal safety investigators were at a Pickens County marble-fabrication plant Tuesday after more than three tons of the stone crushed a worker to death.

The death occurred Monday at Georgia Marble in Tate, in a part of the plant where workers cut the marble from its quarry into sections for counter tops, Lt. Kris Stancil of the Pickens Sheriff Office said.

“One of the gentlemen working one of the machines had several slabs of marble that fell on top of him and he ended up dying,” Stancil told The Atlanta Journal-Constitution. “From what I understand, the estimated weight was 7,000 pounds.”

He identified the victim as Kevin Voyles, 28.

The Occupational Safety and Health Administration confirmed to Channel 2 Action News that it had investigators on site Tuesday. OSHA’s Lindsay Williams told the news station that information was still being gathered late Tuesday to determine the cause of the accident.

Stancil said he knew of no other deaths at the company, which he described as a large and historic county employer. The company was founded in 1884 and the county has a vein of “Georgia marble” five to seven miles long, a half-mile wide, and up to 2,000 feet deep, according to Pickenscountyga.com.

The company is now owned by Polycor Inc. of Quebec, Canada, which owns 25 quarries and five fabrication plants in the United States, according to its website.

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