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State water agency is cited in 2 divers' deaths

August 08, 2007|From Staff and Wire Reports

State investigators Tuesday cited the Department of Water Resources for safety lapses that appear to have contributed to the deaths of two divers in the California Aqueduct this year.

The state Division of Occupational Safety and Health offered no conclusive reason for the February deaths of divers Tim Crawford, 50, and Martin Alvarado, 44. Nevertheless, it fined the department $16,120 for violating several workforce safety regulations.

Crawford and Alvarado drowned Feb. 7 while performing a routine search for mussels on the metal trash grates at the Dos Amigos Pumping Plant, about nine miles from the Central Valley town of Los Banos.

Investigators called decisions by the divers and plant employees possible "contributing factors" in the deaths.

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