OSHA Enforcement Roundup: Week of 10/9

Posted on 10/10/2023 by Nick Waldron

The OSH Act of 1970 requires US employers to provide a safe, healthy workplace for every employee. Failure to comply with applicable OSHA health & safety standards can easily lead to preventable injuries and fatal accidents at workplaces of all types.

The enforcement actions highlighted below provide insight into how and why OSHA issues citations for workplace safety violations. All violations discussed are alleged only, unless we say otherwise.

We withhold the names of organizations and individuals subject to enforcement to protect their privacy. Check out OSHA’s latest list of the 10 most-cited safety Standards here.

A developer and its subcontractors face enforcement action from OSHA for allegedly exposing employees to live power lines.

OSHA says that the company allowed workers to work between five and seven feet from energized power lines during 2021 inspections and again when the inspectors returned in 2022. The Agency posted an imminent danger notice and obtained a temporary restraining order and a consent injunction. The actions restricted all work to stop within eleven feet of the power lines, and the company had the power lines moved across the street.

The company will pay $180,000 in penalties and must:

  • Create a written safety plan and submit it to OSHA.
  • Retain a qualified safety professional to perform job hazard analyses on all worksites.
  • Inform OSHA of all its current and future worksites.
  • Implement a subcontractor management plan—onsite managers of subcontractors must complete 30-hour OSHA training and onsite employees of subcontractors must complete 10-hour training.

An Augusta, Georgia battery manufacturer faces $160,727 in penalties due to alleged unsafe levels of lead exposure.

The company, who designs and manufactures deep cycle batteries for golf carts, boats, and other uses, allegedly failed to have controls in place to reduce lead exposure and did not prevent lead from accumulating on surfaces—notably, on employee respirators and counters where they ate lunch. The company also allegedly exposed workers to greater-than-permissible lead levels.

OSHA issued two serious citations and two repeat violations. And has previously cited the company following inspections in 2018 and 2019.

OSHA proposed $77,684 in penalties for a New Jersey contractor that allegedly exposed employees to unsafe working conditions.

For allegedly exposing employees to falls of up to 23 feet without fall protection, OSHA proposed $77,684 in penalties and cited the contractor for one willful and three serious violations.

Per the Agency, employees were exposed to falling objects while cleaning up roofing debris while on the ground level; exposed to struck-by hazards riding in a cargo van not meant for passengers; allowed to use a ladder unsafely; and exposed to fall hazards working atop a two-story home.

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