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OSHA News Release – Region 6
U.S. Department of Labor
Region 6 News Release: OSHA-03-103
Fri., June 20, 2003
Contact: Diana Petterson or Elizabeth Todd
Phone: (214)767-4776, Ext. 222 or 221
Following A Fatal Accident In Quitman, La.
OSHA proposes $68,625 penalty for T. K. Stanley Inc.
BATON ROUGE, La. -- A Rayne, La.-based company's failure to properly train and protect employees from a fatal crane collapse in Quitman, La., in March has resulted in eight citations for alleged safety and health violations from the Baton Rouge area office of the U.S. Department of Labor's Occupational Safety and Health Administration. Proposed penalties total $68,625.
T.K. Stanley Inc., whose corporate headquarters are in Waynesboro, Miss., was cited with six alleged serious and two repeat violations following an OSHA inspection that began March 20. A moving crane boom carrying a 50-ton mud pump collapsed, due to the muddy, unstable ground, and hit and killed a nearby worker. When the accident occurred, the company, which employs about 500 workers nationwide, had about 12 employees working at the Quitman site to relocate an oil/gas well drilling rig to another site.
The alleged serious violations included failure to train crane operators on the type of cranes they would operate, failure to ensure the crane operator had the authority to stop and refuse to continue operations when loads or conditions were unsafe; failure to perform monthly preventative maintenance inspections of the crane and failure to provide a stable, uniformly level surface for operating a loaded, moving crane. A serious violation is one that could cause death or serious physical harm to employees from a hazard about which the employer knew or should have known.
The alleged repeat violations were for failing to provide load-handling charts for the machine operators' use and for failing to conduct monthly running-rope inspections. OSHA cited T.K. Stanley for the same or similar violations in connection with an accident two years ago when an employee who was assisting a derrick truck operator was killed when the truck's main hoist cable pulled away and struck the worker. A repeat violation is proposed when the same OSHA standard or a like standard has been violated within the last three years.
"OSHA standards are designed to protect workers from the hazards of dropped loads and collapsing equipment when they are working on and around weight handling equipment," said David Doucet, OSHA's assistant area director in Baton Rouge "These standards must be strictly followed to avoid accidents."
The company has 15 working days from receipt of the citations to comply, request an informal conference with the Baton Rouge area director, or to contest the citations and penalties before the independent Occupational Safety and Health Review Commission.
Employers and employees with questions about workplace safety and health standards may call the Baton Rouge OSHA area office at (225) 298-5458. OSHA's toll-free hotline may be used to report workplace accidents, fatalities, or situations posing imminent danger to workers. The number is (800) 321-6742.
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.
U.S. Labor Department news releases are accessible on the Internet at www.dol.gov.
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