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OSHA News Release – Region 2
U.S. Department of Labor
Region 2 News Release: NY 110
February 14, 2000
Contact: Chester J. Fultz
OSHA CITES THREE CONSTRUCTION CONTRACTORS DOING BUSINESS IN
NEW ROCHELLE, NEW YORK FOR ALLEGED WILLFUL AND OTHER
SAFETY VIOLATIONS; $133,330 IN PENALTIES PROPOSED
The U.S. Labor Department's Occupational Safety and Health Administration has cited three construction contractors working on a project in New Rochelle, New York, and proposed penalties totaling $133,300 against the firms, alleging two willful, five repeat, ten serious, and one other-than-serious violation of OSHA standards.
According to OSHA area director Cathie M. Mannion, the action results from an investigation conducted from August 11, 1999 through February 10, 2000 at the New Rochelle Parking Garage, 60 Harrison Avenue, New Rochelle, where the three firms were engaged in construction work. OSHA compliance officers went to the site after receiving a report from the Westchester County health department, which has offices across the street from the garage, that employees were performing plastering work from an unprotected 70-foot-high fabricated metal scaffold.
A general contractor, Cappelli Enterprises, Inc., 15 Stevens Avenue, Valhalla, New York; a scaffolding contractor, J.T.G. and Sons Scaffolding Inc. of 211 West Elizabeth Avenue, Linden, New Jersey; and a plastering contractor, Darcon Construction, Inc., 360 Meacham Avenue, Elmont, New York, were participating in the project.
The alleged serious violations for which the firms were cited included:
- failure to provide fall protection on scaffolding;
- failure to provide ladders or other means of safe access to the scaffolding;
- failure to train employees in the recognition and avoidance of unsafe work practices;
- failure to provide hard hats;
- failure to cover an electrical junction box;
- failure to secure compressed gas cylinders;
- failure to have a written hazard communication program and train employees in the hazards associated with the chemicals in the workplace.
OSHA alleges that Darcon Construction, Inc. willfully violated OSHA's scaffolding standard by failing to provide fall protection on scaffolding and not training employees in the recognition and avoidance of fall hazards on scaffolding. The alleged willful violations carry a total proposed penalty of $88,000. A willful violation is defined by OSHA as one committed with an intentional disregard for, or plain indifference to, the requirements of the OSHA act and regulations.
Darcon Construction, Inc. was also cited for two alleged repeat violations carrying a proposed penalty of $12,000. A repeat violation is one for which an employer has been previously cited for the same or a substantially similar condition and the citation has become a final order of the Occupational Safety and Health Review Commission. Darcon Construction was previously cited for similar conditions in Bayshore, New York, in April, 1997. The plastering firm was also cited for three alleged serious violations totaling $8,100. in proposed penalties, in addition to one alleged other-than-serious violation.
A serious violation is defined as a condition which exists where there is a substantial possibility that death or serious physical harm can result. An other-than-serious violation is a hazardous condition that would probably not cause death or serious physical harm but would have a direct and immediate relationship to the safety and health of employees.
Cappelli Enterprises was cited for five alleged serious violations carrying a total proposed penalty of $13,200 for failing to assure there was proper fall protection prior to allowing employees to use the scaffold.
J.T.G. & Sons Scaffolding Inc. was charged with two alleged serious violations and two alleged repeat violations, with a total proposed penalty of $12,000 for failing to comply with OSHA scaffold safety standards. The firm had previously been cited for similar conditions in February, 1998, in Jersey City, New Jersey.
The investigation was conducted by OSHA's Tarrytown area office, located at 660 White Plains Road, Tarrytown, N. Y. Telephone (914) 524-7510.
The companies have until March 6 to contest the citations.
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