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Grinder Kills Man At Inland Foundry Fellow Worker Turns Machine On While Victim Inside Repairing It

Thu., Oct. 30, 1997, midnight

FROM FOR THE RECORD (Wednesday, January 14, 1998): Correction Ardelle Peele of Otis Orchards was a former friend of R.B. Mason, a North Idaho resident killed in an industrial accident last fall. Her relationship to Mason was reported incorrectly in an Oct. 30 story on Page B3.

A man repairing the inside of an industrial grinder was killed Wednesday when a colleague accidentally turned the machine on, Spokane County sheriff’s deputies said.

R.B. Mason, a 58-year-old Rathdrum, Idaho, resident, died at the scene after being mangled in the grinder. He apparently was inside the machine at the time of the accident, deputies said.

Other details of the accident weren’t available.

The incident occurred about 5:40 a.m. at Inland Foundry, 11250 N. Market. Inspectors from the Washington Department of Labor and Industries are investigating the accident.

Inland Foundry has been cited 56 times and fined more than $8,000 for violating state safety standards over the past three years, according to Labor and Industries records. Most of the violations were minor and some were overturned on appeal.

Company officials refused to discuss the incident or provide details about Mason.

His sister, Ardelle Peele of Otis Orchards, said Mason was married, had two grown children and loved country-western music.

He had his own band for many years and often played clubs in State Line, Idaho, Peele said. “The foundry was his day job,” she said.

Mason was the second worker this week to die on the job in Spokane.

On Monday, a mechanic at Kaiser Aluminum’s Mead smelter was killed. James Vandoren, 33, died when a front-end loader he was repairing fell on him.

Labor and Industries inspectors also are investigating that accident.

, DataTimes

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