Region 4 News Release: 12-2172-ATL (372)
Nov. 7, 2012
Contact: Michael D'Aquino
US Department of Labor's OSHA cites New York contractor for exposing
workers to fall and other hazards at Jacksonville, Fla., work site
JACKSONVILLE, Fla. – RCP Services Inc. of Saratoga Springs, N.Y., has been cited by the U.S. Department of Labor's Occupational Safety and Health Administration for nine safety violations while performing concrete work at a residential apartment complex on Big Island Drive in Jacksonville. An inspection was initiated in August after an OSHA inspector observed employees working without fall protection. Proposed penalties total $47,000.
One willful violation is for allowing employees to work on elevated surfaces without fall protection. The citation carries a $35,000 penalty. A willful violation is one committed with intentional knowing or voluntary disregard for the law's requirements, or with plain indifference to worker safety and health.
Eight serious violations involve exposed and protruding rebar, a lack of eye and face protection, using a welding cable that required repair, using a damaged extension cord, exposing workers to falling objects, not maintaining fire extinguishing equipment and having unprotected holes in the floor that could cause workers to trip or fall. The citations carry $12,000 in penalties. A serious violation occurs when there is substantial probability that death or serious physical harm could result from a hazard about which the employer knew or should have known.
"Falls are the leading cause of death for workers in residential construction," said Brian Sturtecky, OSHA's area director in Jacksonville. "Employers must take responsibility for ensuring that workers have and wear proper equipment at all times."
OSHA has created a fall prevention Web page – http://www.osha.gov/stopfalls – with detailed information in English and Spanish on fall protection standards. The page offers fact sheets, posters and videos that vividly illustrate various fall hazards and appropriate preventive measures.
OSHA and the National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health are working with trade associations, labor unions, employers, universities, community and faith-basedorganizations, and consulates to provide employers and workers â€“ especially vulnerable, low-literacy workers â€“ with education and training on common-sense fall prevention equipment and strategies that save lives.
RCP Services specializes in tunnel form construction. The company has 15 business days from receipt of the citations and proposed penalties to comply, request an informal conference with OSHA's area director or contest the findings before the independent Occupational Safety and Health Review Commission.
To ask questions, obtain compliance assistance, file a complaint, or report workplace hospitalizations, fatalities or situations posing imminent danger to workers, the public should call OSHA's toll-free hotline at 800-321-OSHA (6742) or the agency's Jacksonville Area Office at 904-232-2895.
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 ensure 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
U.S. Department of Labor news materials are accessible at http://www.dol.gov. The information above is available in large print, Braille or CD from the COAST office upon request by calling 216-893-7828 or TTY 216-893-7755.