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NJ CEO Found Personally Liable for Company’s $412K OSHA Violations

Posted on 8/12/2019 by Lauren Scott

On July 25, the US Court of Appeals found a CEO personally liable for his company’s $412k OSHA penalty if the New Jersey construction company refuses to pay.

The Federal appeals court found both the company and its CEO in contempt of court for failing to pay the penalty. If either the CEO or the company fail to pay the $412,000 within 30 days or show the court why they cannot do so, the secretary of labor may issue a daily penalty.

The court cites the construction company’s failure to pay the penalties as part of its decision to hold the CEO personally accountable for the fine.

The US Department of Labor’s Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) issued the penalty to the Washington Township-based construction company for numerous workplace safety violations, including multiple willful violations of OSHA’s fall protection standards.

Fall Hazards in the Construction Industry

Fall protection in the construction industry ranks as the #1 most-cited OSHA safety standard year after year. In FY 2018, OSHA cited more than 7,000 fall protection violations. That said, general industry employers must protect workers from fall hazards as well. OSHA requires fall protection be provided for employees working at elevations of four feet or more in general industry workplaces. Employers must also take steps to prevent falls into or onto dangerous machines or equipment, regardless of height.

For information about protecting general industry workers from fall hazards, visit OSHA’s dedicated webpage for non-construction work.

Safety Training Is the Best Accident Prevention

When your employees know the regulations behind safety procedures, they are less likely to cut corners, reducing the chance of accidents and preventing costly OSHA violations. That’s why Lion offers a full suite of online OSHA Safety Training courses to promote a safe work environment for all employees.

OSHA's Top 10 Most Cited 29 CFR Safety Standards (FY 2018)

1. Fall Protection—Construction (29 CFR 1926.501)
2. Hazard Communication or HazCom (29 CFR 1910.1200)
3. Scaffolds General Requirements—Construction (29 CFR 1926.451)
4. Respiratory Protection (29 CFR 1910.134)
5. Lockout/Tagout (29 CFR 1910.147)
6. Ladders—Construction (29 CFR 1926.1053)
7. Powered Industrial Trucks (29 CFR 1910.178)
8. Fall Protection—Training Requirements (29 CFR 1926.503)
9. Machine Guarding (29 CFR 1910.212)
10. Eye and Face Protection—Construction (29 CFR 1926.95) 

For workers who may be more comfortable learning in an alternative language, many OSHA safety courses are now available in Spanish. If an employee receives job instructions Spanish, then training should be conducted in Spanish as well. Visit Lion.com/Spanish to see the full list of online Spanish-language safety training courses.

Tags: employee, enforcement, occupational safety, osha, penalty, safety, safety violations, worker, workplace safety

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