Jacksonville, Fla., utility contractor cited by US Department of Labor's OSHA
for willful and serious safety violations following the death of a worker
JACKSONVILLE, Fla. – The U.S. Department of Labor's Occupational Safety and Health Administration has cited Callaway Contracting Inc. of Jacksonville for 13 safety violations. OSHA opened an inspection in May following the death of a worker who was electrocuted while unloading steel from a tractor trailer for a roadway rehabilitation project on Normandy Boulevard. The inspection also was expanded to include the company's main office on New Berlin Road.
"This fatality could have been prevented. Management knew about the hazards associated with unloading the truck near power lines, but rushed to get the truck unloaded and failed to take the proper precautions," said Brian Sturtecky, OSHA's area director in Jacksonville.
Callaway, an underground utility contractor, was cited for one willful violation related to the fatality for failing to prevent the load line from contacting the energized overhead power lines. Three other willful violations involve failing to have a qualified person inspect the crane annually and exposing workers to being caught in a rotating superstructure, as well as "struck by" hazards. A willful violation is one committed with intentional knowing or voluntary disregard for the law's requirements, or with plain indifference to worker safety and health.
Eight serious violations involve failing to train employees on procedures to be followed in the event the crane makes contact with power lines, failing to conduct daily inspections of the crane prior to its use, ensuring that the crane's operating manual is readily available inside the cab, adequately training the crane operator, training and designating a signal person, and bolting the drill press to the floor. The employer was cited for exposing employees to flying chips of metal, electrical shocks and being drawn into the point-of-operation of equipment. 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.
One other-than-serious violation was cited, with no monetary penalty, for exposed electrical wires. An other-than-serious violation is one that has a direct relationship to job safety and health, but probably would not cause death or serious physical harm.
The citations can be viewed at http://www.osha.gov/ooc/citations/Callaway_Contracting_315477067_2011_11_02.pdf*.
Proposed penalties total $208,670. Callaway has 15 business days from receipt of the 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.
OSHA has placed Callaway in its Severe Violator Enforcement Program, which mandates targeted follow-up inspections to ensure compliance with the law. Initiated in June 2010, the program focuses on recalcitrant employers that endanger workers by committing willful, repeat or failure-to-abate violations. For more information on SVEP, visit http://s.dol.gov/J3.
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 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 information above is available in large print, Braille, audio tape or disc from the COAST office upon request by calling 202-693-7828 or TTY 202-693-7755.
* Accessibility Assistance: Contact OSHA's Office of Communications at 202-693-1999 for assistance accessing PDF documents.