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Complaint filed in worker death at UC Berkeley

BERKELEY, Calif. (AP) -- A union representing service workers at the University of California, Berkeley has filed a complaint with state authorities over the death of a custodian.

Forty-five-year-old Damon Frick died after falling from a motorized lift April 7 while washing window sills at a campus auditorium 20 feet above the ground.

The complaint against the university alleges Frick never received proper safety training, and his supervisor assigned him the job even though those duties weren't part of his typical work. It was filed Wednesday with the state's Division of Occupational Safety and Health.

Frick's family separately is pursuing a wrongful death claim against UC Berkeley.

There is no indication that the lift had any mechanical problems, and Frick received hands-on training in how to safely use the lift, UC Berkeley spokeswoman Janet Gilmore said Friday.

She added that Cal/OSHA opened an investigation shortly after the incident occurred, and the university is cooperating with that probe.

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