May 19, 2016
OSHA fines 2 Pennsylvania contractors more than $236K
for again exposing employees to serious workplace dangers
Employers name: Penn Stucco Systems Inc., 385 West Ridge Pike, Limerick, Pennsylvania
BC Stucco and Stone, 36 Marian Court, Upper Darby, Pennsylvania
Inspection site: 3018 West Thompson St., Philadelphia
General contractor Westrum Development Co. hired Penn Stucco Systems Inc. to complete stucco work on a building at the site location. Penn then contracted BC Stucco and Stone to provide labor for the job.
Citations issued: On May 2, 2016, the U.S. Department of Labor's Occupational Safety and Health Administration issued citations to Penn Stucco for one serious and four repeat violations, and to BC Stucco for three willful, two repeat and two serious violations.
Inspection findings: OSHA opened its investigations after it received a complaint alleging employees from both companies were working approximately 20 feet on a scaffold with major safety deficiencies, such as lack of planking, bracing, safe access and stability.
The agency found repeat violations when Penn Stucco:
- Allowed workers on scaffolds approximately 39-feet high that were not fully planked or decked.
- Had employees doing stucco work on a fabricated frame scaffold not restrained from tipping.
- Used a scaffold without ladders, stair towers or other safe means of access.
- Failed to provide fall prevention or guardrails to address fall hazards.
OSHA previously cited the company for similar violations in 2012, 2013 and 2014.
Penn's serious citation was due to failure to ensure that each walkway used by employees was protected by a guardrail.
In its inspection of BC Stucco, the agency found the company:
- Maintained scaffolds approximately 39-feet high that were not fully planked or decked.
- Exposed employees to falls of 15 to 39 feet from walkways without guardrails.
- Did not willfully provide fall arrest or guardrail systems to prevent falls.
OSHA also found repeat violations by BC Stucco when it:
- Allowed employees to work on a fabricated frame scaffold without restraints to avoid tipping.
- Failed to provide ladders, stair towers or other safe means of access to the scaffold.
The agency previously cited BC Stucco for similar violations in 2013 and 2014.
In addition, OSHA issued serious citations to the company for not installing protection on the fabricated frame scaffold to avoid falling materials, and for providing or requiring workers to wear hard hats.
Quote: "OSHA determined the general contractor shortened the schedule in the middle of the project. Both employers pushed to rush completion and bypassed safety," Nicholas DeJesse, director of OSHA's Philadelphia Area Office. "Penn Stucco Systems and BC Stucco and Stone jeopardized their workers' safety knowingly by failing to provide basic scaffolding safeguards intended to prevent serious injuries and save lives. Both of these companies have a history of ignoring safety standards and putting their workers at risk. Such behavior is unacceptable and it must stop before someone is seriously hurt or worse."
Proposed penalties: $119,790 for Penn Stucco Systems Inc.
$116,600 for BC Stucco and Stone
The citations can be viewed at:
The employer has 15 business days from receipt of its citations and proposed penalties to comply, request a conference with OSHA's area director or contest the findings before the independent Occupational Safety and Health Review Commission.
To ask questions; obtain compliance assistance; file a complaint; or report amputations, eye loss, 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 Philadelphia Area Office at 215-597-4955.
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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Release Number: 16-1015-PHI (osha 16-058)
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