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Region 1 BOS 2003-086
May 5, 2003
Contact: Ted Fitzgerald
Phone: (617) 565-2074


Nearly $127,000 in Fines Proposed against Three Contractors for Fall,
Cave-in, and Other Safety Hazards at Shirley, Mass. Jobsite

METHUEN, Mass. -- Failure to protect workers at a Shirley, Mass., construction site against falls, cave-ins and other potentially fatal safety hazards has resulted in $126,300 in fines against three contractors.

The U.S. Labor Department's Occupational Safety and Health Administration cited S&R Construction of Johnston, R.I., Stanley Roofing Company, Inc. of Ipswich, Mass. and Bostonian Masonry Corp., of East Walpole, Mass., for alleged violations of the Occupational Safety and Health Act identified during an inspection of the New Shirley Middle School Construction Project.

"These violations encompass four of the leading hazards in construction: falls, cave-ins, being struck by vehicles and electrical hazards," said U.S. Secretary of Labor Elaine L. Chao. "It's imperative that employers ensure effective safeguards against these all too common and deadly hazards." S&R Construction faces a total of $68,300 in fines for one willful citation for failing to supply cave-in protection for employees working in an unguarded seven-foot deep trench; a repeat citation for failing to place excavated material two feet or more from the trench's edge, thus exposing employees to being struck or crushed by material falling or rolling into the trench; and four serious citations for obstructed vision for an excavator; no seatbelt on a loader; backing up a large loader without a reverse signal alarm or a spotter to prevent workers from being struck; damaged or misused ladders and failure to train workers in proper ladder use.

Stanley Roofing was issued a willful citation, with a $42,000 fine, for failing to supply fall protection for employees constructing a roof deck, thus exposing them to falls of 30 feet to the ground below.

Bostonian Masonry was issued five serious citations, with $16,000 in fines, for fall hazards from the absence of a fall protection program, missing guardrails and employees climbing a scaffold's diagonal bracing to reach a work area; electrocution hazard from placement of an electrical conductor across the scaffold; tripping hazards from debris strewn through the work area; and failing to supply toeboards on overhead work platforms to prevent materials from falling onto workers at lower levels.

Each employer has 15 business days from receipt of its citations and proposed penalties to either elect to comply with them, to request and participate in an informal conference with the OSHA area director, or to contest them before the independent Occupational Safety and Health Review Commission. A breakdown of the citations and fines is attached.

The OSHA Area Office in Methuen conducted the inspection. The telephone number is (617) 565-8110. The Occupational Safety and Health Administration is dedicated to saving lives, preventing injuries and illnesses, and protecting America's workers. Safety and health add value to business, the workplace and life. For more information, visit www.osha.gov.



Fact Sheet OSHA Citations and Proposed Penalties

New Shirley Middle School Construction Project Shirley, Mass.
S & R Construction, Johnston, RI Total proposed penalties: $68,300

  • One alleged willful violation, with a proposed fine of $56,000, for failing to protect employees in a seven-foot deep trench from cave-in hazards.

  • One alleged Repeat violation, with a fine of $4,800, for failing to store excavated materials at least two feet from the edge of an excavation. [S&R Construction had previously been cited for a substantially similar hazard at a Providence, R.I., jobsite in November 2000.]

  • Four alleged serious violations, with $7,500 in fines, for damaged cab glass; rollover hazards from lack of seatbelts in a loader; crushing hazards from equipment lacking audible reverse alarm; damaged and misused ladders and lack of ladder training for workers.
Stanley Roofing       Ipswich, Mass. Total proposed penalties: $42,000

  • One alleged willful violation, with a $35,000 fine, for no fall protection for workers constructing the leading edge of a roof deck.


Bostonian Masonry       East Walpole, Mass. Total proposed penalties: $16,000

  • Five alleged serious violations, with $16,000 in fines, for failure to remove debris from walking/working surfaces; electrical conductor contacting surface of scaffolding; no fall protection for employees working on a roof; fall hazard from workers using scaffold cross braces to access a work platform; fall hazards from missing guardrails; missing toeboards.

Total Proposed Penalties for All Employers: $126,300

  • OSHA defines a willful violation as one committed with an intentional disregard of, or plain indifference to, the requirements of the Occupational Safety and Health Act and regulations.

  • OSHA defines a serious violation as one in which 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 issues repeat citations when an employer has previously been cited for substantially similar violations and those citations have become final.
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The information in this release will be made available to sensory impaired individuals upon request. Voice phone: (617) 565-2072. TDD (Telecommunications Device dor the Deaf) Message Referral Phone: 800-347-8029.


Archive Notice - OSHA Archive

NOTICE: This is an OSHA Archive Document, and may no longer represent OSHA Policy. It is presented here as historical content, for research and review purposes only.

OSHA News Release - (Archived) Table of Contents

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