April 21, 2008
Contact: Deanne Amaden
Phone: 415-625-2630 email@example.com
Employer cited for one willful violation, 13 serious violations at two sites
SAN FRANCISCO -- The U.S. Department of Labor's Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) has cited High Rock Construction Corp. for alleged safety violations at two Guam jobsites. Inspectors noted the violations at construction sites in Talofofo and Yona in October 2007 as well as January and February 2008.
"What we're seeing is a pattern of safety violations by this employer," said Richard Terrill, acting regional administrator for OSHA in San Francisco. "These violations have the potential to cause death or serious injury to company employees, and we're taking this matter very seriously."
OSHA has cited High Rock Construction for one willful violation, with a proposed penalty of $56,000, for failing to provide and enforce the use of fall protection where employees were exposed to a 20-foot fall hazard. OSHA standards require fall protection when employees are working six feet or more above ground level. A willful violation is one committed with intentional disregard of, or plain indifference to, the requirements of the Occupational Safety and Health Act regulations.
OSHA has assessed a total of $34,400 in proposed penalties for 13 serious violations, including failure to have an employee at the worksite trained in first aid; failure to have available first aid services or transportation; lack of fall protection in hoisting areas; lack of handrails and guardrails on stairs, walkways or bridges; and lack of foot, eye and face protection. Serious violations exist when there is a substantial probability that death or serious physical harm could result, and the employer knew or should have known of the hazard.
OSHA also has assessed a total of $45,000 in proposed penalties for five repeat violations involving failure to provide fall protection and head protection, poor housekeeping and using a damaged flexible cord.
High Rock Construction, based in Tamuning, Guam, has 15 business days from receipt of the citations and proposed penalties to comply with them, to request and participate in an informal conference with OSHA's area director, or to contest the citations before the independent Occupational Safety and Health Review Commission.
OSHA operates a vigorous enforcement program, conducting more than 39,000 inspections in fiscal year 2007 and exceeding its inspection goals in each of the last eight years. In fiscal year 2007, OSHA found more than 89,000 violations of its standards and regulations.
Under the Occupational Safety and Health Act of 1970, employers are responsible for providing a safe and healthy workplace for their employees. OSHA's role is to promote the safety and health of America's working men and women by setting and enforcing standards; providing training, outreach and education; establishing partnerships; and encouraging continual process improvement in workplace safety and health. For more information, visit www.osha.gov.
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