Tuesday, August 4, 2009

Work Platform on a Skid Loader


The article below from O H & S (OSHA Healh and Safety) states that OSHA has cited the contractor is being fined $13,300 for the fatal fatality of one of their workers when he fell from a makeshift work platform mounted on a skid steer loader.

The key word here is SKID STEER


This type machine is to be used ONLY for loader type operations using a bucket, back hoe or other types of attachments that NO WORKER SHALL be on it except the machine's operator. The Operator must be anchored while in the seat by use of a seat belt and/or a rigid bar that prevents the engine to run if it is not connected properly.

All portable elevated work platforms must have controls that they may be operated in emergency operations from the platform. Also, the platform must be constructed with fall protection rails with provisions for the worker to anchor to.

Rules for Aerial Work Platforms DO apply to this type operation and is clearly spelled out in the OSHA 1926, Construction Manual. This operation is strictly a Donkey operation and makes no Horse Sense.

Is $13,300 sufficient for a WILLFUL, "get by as cheap as you can" short cut? I don't think so. It is almost a standard operation for OSHA to cut the already insufficient fines that will get the contractors' attention will be chopped down to an insignificant amount after an informal conference.

This fatality is totally uncalled for and the fines should be multiplied several times, not cut to a mere tap on the wrist conference.

Kansas Construction Firm Fined $13,300 Following Fatality

OSHA has cited Diamond Sawing and Coring LLC of Summerfield, Kan., for alleged violations of the Occupational Safety and Health (OSH) Act.

OSHA cited the company following an investigation into a fatal accident in Lincoln, Neb., where a worker fell from an elevated platform that was affixed to a skid steer loader to the concrete below. OSHA inspectors found two alleged serious violations of the OSH Act.

"This accident was preventable. Employers cannot allow employees to be exposed to fall hazards," said Charles Adkins, OSHA's regional administrator in Kansas City, Mo. "It is imperative that employers eliminate hazards and provide a safe work environment to prevent accidents from occurring."

The alleged serious violations stem from a lack of employee training and the employer altering equipment to accommodate personnel lifting without evaluating the equipment's ability to support the alteration. OSHA issues a serious citation when death or serious physical harm is likely to result from a hazard that an employer knew or should have known about.

The violations carry $13,300 in proposed penalties against the company. Diamond Sawing and Coring has 15 business days from receipt of these citations to comply, request an informal conference with OSHA's area director in Omaha or contest the findings before the independent Occupational Safety and Health Review Commission.

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