$11,000,000 – Death from Factory Fall

The family of an Elsmere man who died after falling into a container of boiling water at a Claymont steel factory reached an $11 million settlement with the firm responsible for workplace safety at the plant, the family's attorney said Wednesday.

Robert J. Mongeluzzi

Anthony F. Fuhr, 35, fell into the pit through an opening that was not protected by a safety guardrail.

Envirosource Management Corp, which was handling safety issues at the CitiSteel USA plant at the time of the 2003 incident, knew it was violating safety regulations by not having the guardrail, said Robert J. Mongeluzzi, the Philadelphia attorney hired by Fuhr's family.

"The sad part of this tragedy was that it was a totally preventable accident," Mongeluzzi said. "For a few hundred dollars for a guardrail, Anthony Fuhr would be alive today."

After Fuhr's death, Mongeluzzi said, Envirosource Management ordered a guardrail to be placed along the catwalk that Fuhr fell from. The firm also ordered that guardrails be placed at other sites where its parent company, International Mill Services of Horshanrij Pa., has operations, Mongeluzzi said.

International Mill Services, which contracts at CitiSteel, would not comment Mongeluzzi said a guardrail was not in place originally because the company decided it would interfere with its machines.

Fuhr had been working on scaffolding Feb. 14, 2003 when he fell into a 10-by-30-foot container holding about 2 feet of boiling water. After falling into the water, which is used to cool molten steel, Fuhr was able to climb out and yell for help.

Fuhr suffered second- and third-degree burns to 95 percent of his body. He died 13 days later.

Fuhr was survived by his wife, Pam Fuhr, their 3-year-old son, Anthony J. Fuhr, and a 12-year-old son, Nick, from a previous marriage.

"I'm glad it's over," said Pam Fuhr, who added that she has suffered emotional and financial hardships since losing her husband. She said the loss other husband has been a strain on her youngest son, who sees classmates with their fathers and asks where his father is.

Pam Fuhr said she points to the sky and tells her son that his father is in heaven, and she tells her son that "Daddy is still in his hear.t"

Fuhr's family filed a laws Lit in Philadelphia, where the company was once based. The settlement was reached Tuesday night, Mongeluzzi said, six days after the trial started.

"To me it wasn't about the money," Pam Fuhr said. "I just want to make sure that no one loses their life or goes through it again.

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Robert J. Mongeluzzi

Office: 215-575-2989