US Department of Labor's OSHA cites San Antonio construction company
for exposing workers to cave-in and struck-by hazards
SAN ANTONIO – The U.S. Department of Labor's Occupational Safety and Health Administration has cited Yantis Construction Co. with one serious and one repeat violation following an inspection which began in December 2012 when workers were being exposed to cave-in and struck-by hazards during the installation of a water pipe at the 36th Street work site in San Antonio. Proposed penalties total $74,400.
A repeat violation was cited for failing to provide the required shoring, trench shields or sloping to prevent a possible cave-in during an excavation project. 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. Similar violations were cited in March 2011 and March 2009.
The serious violation was issued for failing to provide the required protection for workers from being struck-by gravel poured above or near the work site. A serious violation is one in which there is substantial probability that death or serious physical harm could result from a hazard about which the employer knew or should have known.
"An inadequately protected trench or excavation can collapse in seconds, resulting in severe or fatal consequences," said Kelly Knighton, OSHA's area director in San Antonio. "This employer has been previously cited for failing to ensure that effective cave-in protection is in place at all times at all work sites. OSHA will not tolerate an employer's repeated negligence to provide a safe working environment."
Information on excavation hazards and safeguards is available at http://www.osha.gov/SLTC/trenchingexcavation/index.html.
San Antonio-based Yantis Construction has 15 business days from receipt of citations to comply, request an informal conference with OSHA's San Antonio office 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 San Antonio office at 210-472-5040.
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 or CD from the COAST office upon request by calling 202-693-7828 or TTY 202-693-7755.