Lack of fall protection, other safety hazards results in citations issued to
Philadelphia construction company after inspection at Medford, NJ, work site
Top Class Construction Inc. fined nearly $45,000
PHILADELPHIA – Employee exposure to safety hazards has resulted in citations issued to Top Class Construction Inc. after federal safety inspectors found eight serious and repeat violations at a Medford, N.J., residential construction site. The inspection, conducted by the U.S. Department of Labor's Occupational Safety and Health Administration, was initiated under a Local Emphasis Program focused on fall hazards*, and has resulted in $44,880 in proposed penalties.
"Top Class Construction is unnecessarily taking risks with the safety of its employees by not providing the proper fall protection. This company's repeated disregard for safety standards and continued failure to uphold its legal responsibility to provide a safe workplace will not be tolerated," said Paula Dixon-Roderick, director of OSHA's Marlton Area Office. "Falls are the leading cause of death in construction, so it's vital that these hazards are eliminated immediately."
The repeat violations reflect the company's failure to provide fall protection for employees working on wooden trusses, provide fall protection training, ensure that ladders are used properly, and have a competent person conduct frequent and regular job site inspections. The company was cited for similar violations in 2013. A repeat violation exists 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.
The serious violations include the improper use of an A-frame ladder, the lack of training on ladders, the company's failure to provide employees with a safe means of access to different working levels of a building, and damaged electrical cords. A serious violation occurs when there is substantial probability that death or serious physical harm could result from a hazard about which the employer knew or should have known.
According to preliminary data from the Bureau of Labor Statistics, falls in construction accounted for 269 fatal occupational injuries in 2012. OSHA's fall prevention campaign provides employers and workers with lifesaving information and educational materials about working safely from ladders, scaffolds and roofs. More information on fall protection standards is available in English and Spanish at http://www.osha.gov/stopfalls.
Top Class Construction has 15 business days from receipt of the citations to comply, request an informal conference with the OSHA area director in Marlton, or contest the citations and proposed penalties before the independent Occupational Safety and Health Review Commission.
To ask questions, obtain compliance assistance, file a complaint, or report workplace hospitalizations, fatalities or situations posing imminent danger to workers, the public should call OSHA's toll-free hotline at 800-321-OSHA (6742) or the agency's Marlton Area Office at 856-596-5200.
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 ensure 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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U.S. Department of Labor news materials are accessible at http://www.dol.gov. The information above is available in large print, Braille, audio tape or disc from the COAST office upon request by calling 303-693-7838 or TTY 303-693-7755.
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