A little Horse Sense and the provision of a Safety Person with authority to shut down unsafe work conditions can prevent such incidents as is noted in this article.
It seems that this contractor didn't learn from previous citations that "once cited, don't put your workers in the same type perils."
Company faces fines in roof collapse
A Rhode Island construction company has been cited for 15 safety violations and faces $239,600 in fines stemming from the Dec. 4 collapse of a warehouse that was under construction in Liberty and Union Industrial Park.
Ajax Construction of Harrisville, R.I., had no comment Tuesday on the citations and fines the federal Occupational Safety and Health Administration has proposed.
OSHA’s months-long inspection determined that a truck was improperly used at the warehouse construction site to straighten a steel column that was disconnected from an overhead girder. Once the column was pulled out, the girder and overhead roof deck collapsed, injuring eight workers.
“The sizable fines proposed here reflect both the gravity of the hazards found at this job site, and the employer’s knowledge of and failure to correct them,” said OSHA area director Brenda Gordon.
“This employer’s refusal to properly follow basic steel erection procedures placed employees at risk of crushing and other catastrophic injuries or death before, during and after the collapse.”
The Dec. 4 accident happened as workers were connecting 40-foot steel roof panels on the warehouse, which is in the Phase II and III sections of the industrial park. Shortly before 10 a.m., eight of the giant panels collapsed inward, sending the workers tumbling 30 feet to the cement floor.
After the roof collapse, an Ajax official repeatedly entered the site, even though entry was prohibited because the building had not yet been stabilized, OSHA said.
For those conditions, plus the alleged failure to maintain structural stability while erecting steel, OSHA issued Ajax Construction four willful citations, carrying $212,000 in proposed fines.
OSHA also has issued the company nine serious citations, with $21,000 in proposed fines, for allegedly exposing employees to struck-by hazards while the powered industrial truck was used to straighten steel columns; improper lifting slings; commencing steel erection without written notification as to the strength of concrete used for the base; improper modification of anchor bolts; and several steel erection deficiencies within an adjacent structure also under construction.
In addition, OSHA has issued Ajax one repeat citation, with a $6,000 proposed fine, for allegedly having an inadequate fall-protection lifeline. The company was cited for a similar condition in 2006 at a Wallingford, Conn., work site.
Ajax Construction also faces a $600 fine for allegedly failing to complete an OSHA illness and injury log in a timely manner.
The company has 15 days to decide whether to contest the citations and fines before an independent review commission.