Sonic Creations Inc. cited for repeat and serious safety violations following US
Department of Labor OSHA inspection
SANTA ROSA BEACH, Fla. – Sonic Creations Inc., of Destin, has been cited by the U.S. Department of Labor's Occupational Safety and Health Administration for three repeat and two serious safety violations for failing to provide workers who were framing houses with required protection from falls. Falls are the leading cause of death in the construction industry and are responsible for thousands of serious injuries each year. Following an inspection in January 2014, OSHA issued citations at the Water Color subdivision in Santa Rosa Beach. Penalties total $53,020.
"This employer has been cited five times in the past 11 months for unsafe working conditions and yet we are still finding safety issues unaddressed," said Brian Sturtecky, director of OSHA's Jacksonville Area Office. "When employers take shortcuts related to safety and health they are gambling with workers' lives."
The repeat citations involve the employer failing to provide a fall protection system for employees working and walking on elevated surfaces and failing to ensure employees were provided personal protective equipment for the head, eyes and face. OSHA proposes $45,430 in penalties for the repeat violations. 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 facility in federal enforcement states within the last five years. Sonic Creations was cited for these same violations in November 2013.
The serious citations, with $7,590 in penalties, involve the employer's failure to keep the work site free from hazardous debris, such as construction materials and scrap lumber with protruding nails, and not protecting workers from falling to the lower level on scaffolding. 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.
OSHA has created a fall prevention Web page at http://www.osha.gov/stopfalls with detailed information in English and Spanish on fall protection standards. The page offers fact sheets, posters and videos that vividly illustrate various fall hazards and appropriate preventive measures.
Sonic Creations, which specializes in residential and commercial framing, has 15 business days from receipt of its citations to comply, request an informal conference with OSHA's Jacksonville area director, or contest the citations and 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 Jacksonville Area Office at 904-232-2895.
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.
U.S. Department of Labor news materials are accessible at http://www.dol.gov. The department's Reasonable Accommodation Resource Center converts departmental information and documents into alternative formats, which include Braille and large print. For alternative format requests, please contact the department at (202) 693-7828 (voice) or (800) 877-8339 (federal relay).