US Labor Department's OSHA cites Wayne, NJ, stucco contractor with $61,600 in
fines for repeated worker exposure to fall hazards at Staten Island, NY, worksite
Company added to Severe Violator Enforcement Program
WAYNE, N.J. – The U.S. Department of Labor's Occupational Safety and Health Administration has cited Exterior Stucco Systems Inc. of Wayne with five repeat safety violations involving fall hazards at a Staten Island, N.Y., worksite. Proposed penalties total $61,600.
OSHA initiated an inspection of the site on Sept. 1 as part of a local emphasis program focused on fall hazards in construction. As a result, the company received citations for failing to maintain a safety program, fully plank scaffold platforms, provide a ladder for safe scaffold access, remove and replace damaged scaffold components, and properly brace scaffolds with cross braces.
A repeat violation is issued when an employer previously has been cited for the same or a similar violation of a standard, regulation, rule or order at any other facility in federal enforcement states within the last five years. Due to the number of repeat violations cited, the company has been added to the Severe Violator Enforcement Program.
Initiated in June 2010, SVEP is intended to focus OSHA enforcement resources on recalcitrant employers that endanger workers by demonstrating indifference to their responsibilities under the law by committing willful, repeated or failure-to-abate violations in one or more of the following circumstances: a fatality or catastrophe; industry operations or processes that expose workers to severe occupational hazards; employee exposure to hazards related to the potential releases of highly hazardous chemicals; and all egregious enforcement actions. For more information on SVEP, visit http://www.osha.gov/dep/svep-directive.pdf*.
"Exterior Stucco Systems' refusal to implement the proper fall protections leaves workers at risk of an accident and possible death," says Patricia Jones, director of OSHA's area office in Avenel, N.J. "The company needs to take immediate steps to eliminate these hazards."
Detailed information about fall hazards and safeguards is available on OSHA's website at http://www.osha.gov/SLTC/fallprotection/construction.html.
The company has 15 business days from receipt of the citations to comply, ask for 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 Area 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-OSHA (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, education and assistance. For more information, visit http://www.osha.gov.
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