Region 6 News Release: OSHA-09-105-DAL
Wednesday, Feb. 18, 2009
Contact: Diana Petterson or Elizabeth Todd
Phone: 972-850-4709 972-850-4710
U.S. Department of Labor's OSHA fines construction company $63,000 for alleged safety violations at Clinton, Ark., worksite
CLINTON, Ark. -- The U.S. Department of Labor's Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) has cited Harrison, Ark.-based Henley Construction Inc. with two willful and three repeat violations of OSHA standards and has proposed $63,000 in penalties.
"Failure to protect employees from potential trenching and excavation hazards is unacceptable," said Carlos Reynolds, OSHA's area director in Little Rock, Ark. "It is fortunate in this case that on one was injured."
OSHA's Little Rock Area Office began its inspection on Nov. 4, 2008, at the company's worksites on 1499 Highway 65 and 1683 Highway 65 in Clinton. The investigation, which was part of OSHA's National Emphasis Program, found alleged willful violations including the company's failure to provide training in avoiding hazards associated with working in trenches 8-feet deep or more and failure to provide a means of egress while employees are working at excavation worksites that are 4-feet deep or more. OSHA defines a willful violation as one committed with intentional disregard of, or plain indifference to, the requirements of the Occupational Safety and Health Act.
Repeat violations include failure to ensure employees working in trenches 8 feet deep are adequately protected from cave-ins and failure to provide the use of personal protective equipment. In this case, employees were not provided with hard hats. A repeat violation is defined as a violation that previously was cited where, upon re-inspection, a substantially similar violation is found.
Henley Construction has 15 business days from receipt of the citations to comply, request an informal conference with OSHA's area director in Little Rock, or contest the citations and penalties before the independent Occupational Safety and Health Review Commission.
Employers and employees with questions regarding workplace safety and health standards may contact OSHA's Little Rock Area Office at 501-224-1841 or call the agency's toll-free hotline at 800-321-6742 to report workplace accidents, fatalities or situations posing imminent danger to employees.
OSHA operates a vigorous enforcement program, conducting almost 39,000 inspections and finding nearly 88,000 violations of its standards and regulations in fiscal year 2008.
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.
U.S. Department of Labor releases are accessible on the Internet at www.dol.gov. The information in this news release will be made available in alternate format (large print, Braille, audiotape or disc) from the COAST office upon request. Please specify which news release when placing your request at 202-693-7828 or TTY 202-693-7755. The Labor Department is committed to providing America's employers and employees with easy access to understandable information on how to comply with its laws and regulations. For more information, please visit www.dol.gov/compliance.