Region 2 News Release: 10-259-NEW (osha 10-45)
March 25, 2010
Contact: Leni Fortson
US Labor Department's OSHA cites South Amboy, NJ,
stucco contractor for fall hazards
SOUTH AMBOY, N.J. ¿ The U.S. Department of Labor's Occupational Safety and Health Administration has cited JLC Stucco Co. for alleged workplace safety hazards involving falls at a Somerset, N.J., worksite. Proposed penalties total $49,600.
"Employees were exposed to a potentially fatal fall hazard of more than 13 feet from scaffolds while applying a final coat of stucco to a building," said Patricia Jones, director of the OSHA office in Avenel, N.J. "The company can effectively address these and any future hazards by implementing a comprehensive safety and health management system."
OSHA initiated its inspection on Nov. 16, 2009, as part of a local emphasis program focused on fall hazards in the construction industry. As a result of the inspection, the company has been issued citations for three willful violations, with a penalty of $42,000; one repeat violation, with a penalty of $5,600; and two serious violations, with a penalty of $2,000.
The willful violations are for failure to adequately plank the scaffold platform; provide workers with a ladder for safe access to scaffold platforms; and provide workers with fall protection. A willful violation is one committed with intentional, knowing or voluntary disregard for the law's requirements, or with plain indifference to employee safety and health.
The repeat violation is for the company's use of a scaffold that was missing cross bracing. A repeat violation is issued when an employer has had a substantially similar violation of any standard, regulation, rule or order at any of its facilities in the past.
The serious violations reflect the company's failure to have a competent person inspect the scaffold and train workers to recognize hazards associated with a scaffold. OSHA issues a serious citation when there is substantial probability that death or serious physical harm could result and the employer knew, or should have known, of the hazard.
Detailed information on scaffold hazards and safe work practices, including an interactive e-Tool, is available online at http://www.osha.gov/SLTC/scaffolding/index.html.
The company has 15 business days from receipt of the citations to comply, request an informal conference with OSHA's area director, or contest the citations and proposed penalties before the independent Occupational Safety and Health Review Commission. The investigation was conducted by OSHA's Avenel Office; telephone: 732-750-3270. To report workplace accidents, fatalities or situations posing imminent danger to workers, call OSHA's toll-free hotline at 800-321-6742.
Under the Occupational Safety and Health Act of 1970, employers are responsible for providing safe and healthful workplaces for their employees. OSHA's role is to assure these conditions for America's working men and women by setting and enforcing standards, and providing training, outreach, education and assistance. For more information, visit http://www.osha.gov.
U.S. Department of Labor releases are accessible on the Internet at http://www.dol.gov. The information in this news release will be made available in alternate format (large print, Braille, audiotape or disc) from the COAST office upon request. Please specify which news release when placing your request at 202-693-7828 or TTY 202-693-7755. The Labor Department is committed to providing America's employers and employees with easy access to understandable information on how to comply with its laws and regulations. For more information, please visit http://www.dol.gov/compliance.