Last month, the Department of Labor’s Occupational Safety and Health Administration released a list of the 10 most frequently cited health and safety violations for the fiscal year. The list was based on close to 32,000 workplace safety inspections completed by OSHA staff.
According to Thomas Galassi, the director of enforcement programs for OSHA, the list doesn’t change much from year to year.
Top 10 Most Cited OSHA Violations for 2016:
- Fall protection
- Hazard communication
- Respiratory protection
- Powered industrial trucks
- Machine guarding
- Electrical wiring
- Electrical, general requirements
The agency often highlights major citations and fines issued to employers across the nation through press releases in order to emphasize workplace safety.
Highlighting the lack of fall protection at one commercial construction worksite in Columbus, Ohio, the agency issued several citations to Seneca Steel Erectors Inc., of Dublin, for eight serious and two repeated violations carrying proposed penalties of $92,286. The agency found Seneca failed to:
- Ensure workers attached themselves to the basket of the aerial lift and stood firmly on the floor of the lift basket during operations. OSHA cited the company for these same violations in February 2013 at a job site in Dublin.
- Provide required fall protection.
- Prevent loads on the boom and lift basket from exceeding limits.
- Train employees on how to operate aerial lifts and understand fall hazards.
- Provide a qualified rigger.
In addition, violations were also issued to Construction Labor Contractors, the temporary employment agency that provided the workers, and The Daimler Group, the site’s general contractor. OSHA also issued three serious violations to Construction Labor Contractors for failing to provide a qualified rigger, to train employees about fall hazards and proper operation of aerial lifts. OSHA has proposed penalties of $37,413 to Richfield-based company. The agency cited the Daimler Group for failing to train workers in fall hazards and conduct site inspections. The company faces penalties of $17,460.
“Asking workers to walk steel and work in aerial lifts at heights of 60 feet without fall protection is reckless and needlessly exposes them to the risks of serious injury and death,” said Larry Johnson, OSHA’s area director in Columbus. “Temporary staffing agencies and host employers share control over the employee, and are jointly responsible for a temporary employee’s safety and health. General contractors also have a responsibility to inspect job sites and ensure safety procedures are followed.”
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