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Region 7 News Release 10-1361-KAN
Oct. 13, 2010
Contact: Rich Kulczewski
Phone: 303-844-1302
E-mail: kulczewski.richard@dol.gov

US Labor Department's OSHA cites Swain Construction in Omaha, Neb., more
than $118,000 for failing to train workers on heavy equipment, other hazards

OMAHA, Neb. - The U.S. Department of Labor's Occupational Safety and Health Administration has cited Swain Construction in Omaha with one alleged willful and 14 alleged serious violations for failing to train workers on heavy equipment and other hazards. Proposed penalties total $118,350.

OSHA's inspection began in April following the report of an incident involving a skid steer loader that seriously injured a worker.

"Employees cannot be expected to work in an environment where deficient or damaged machinery is being operated," said Charles Adkins, OSHA's regional administrator in Kansas City, Mo. "The workers operating machinery must have the necessary training in safe operation before climbing into a piece of heavy machinery."

The willful violation stems from the company's failure to adequately train the operators of heavy equipment in the proper and safe operation of the equipment. OSHA issues a willful violation when an employer exhibits plain indifference to or intentional disregard for employee safety and health.

The serious violations stem from failure to tag or remove from use unsafe equipment or machinery; absent or deficient guardrail or stair rail systems; deficiencies in the lockout/tagout of potentially hazardous energy sources; inadequate or missing machine guarding; equipment used for compressed air in disrepair; unlabeled and unguarded electric wiring; absence of hazard communication; lack of jobsite inspections; and failure to ensure that personal protective equipment was used. OSHA issues a serious citation when death or serious physical harm is likely to result from a hazard that an employer knew or should have known about.

Swain Construction has 15 business days from receipt of the citations to comply, request an informal conference with OSHA's area director in Omaha or contest the findings before the independent Occupational Safety and Health Review Commission. Employers and employees with questions regarding workplace safety and health standards should call OSHA's Omaha Area Office at 402-553-0171 or the agency's toll-free hotline at 800-321-6742 to report workplace accidents, fatalities or situations posing imminent danger to workers.

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 assure 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.

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U.S. Department of Labor releases are accessible on the Internet at http://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 http://www.dol.gov/compliance.


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