Contractors Learning a Hard Lesson On Kimball Union Academy Worksite

OSHA proposes more than $193,000 in fines for stability, steel erection, cave-in, fall hazards at Kimball Union Academy site

The U.S. Department of Labor’s Occupational Safety and Health Administration has proposed a total of $193,400 in fines for three Pennsylvania-based contractors for alleged violations of workplace safety standards at a work site located at the Kimball Union Academy in Meriden, N.H.

The largest penalties are proposed against JDE Inc. of Souderton, Penn., general contractor for the construction of a field house on the campus grounds. An inspection by OSHA’s Concord Area Office resulted in OSHA issuing four willful citations with $140,000 in proposed fines to JDE. The citations address the employer’s failure to ensure that the concrete foundation was structurally sound and the structural steel was constantly stable during the erection process. This exposed employees to crushing hazards if the foundation weakened and/or the structural steel collapsed. Additionally, JDE failed to protect its employees against fall and cave-in hazards. A willful violation is one committed with intentional knowing or voluntary disregard for the law’s requirements, or with plain indifference to worker safety and health.

Five serious citations with $19,800 in fines were issued to JDE for its failure to test the concrete footings prior to steel erection, ensure plans for the concrete forms were available on-site, prevent workers from climbing the rails of an aerial lift, provide a properly drained work site for equipment and train workers to recognize steel erection and other hazards. A serious violation occurs when there is substantial probability that death or serious physical harm could result from a hazard about which the employer knew or should have known.

Steel erection contractor Superior Fabric Structures of New Providence, Pa., was issued three serious citations, with $21,000 in fines, for failing to ensure the structural steel was constantly stable during the erection process, obtain written notification that the concrete had achieved sufficient strength to support steel erection loads and train workers in steel erection hazards and the operation of powered industrial trucks. Masonry contractor Pat Campion, doing business as Campion Construction Co., of Glenside, Pa., faces $12,600 in fines for three serious citations for lack of cave-in protection for employees in an excavation, not training workers to identify cave-in hazards and not having a competent person inspect the excavation to identify and correct hazards.

The full citations can be viewed at
http://www.osha.gov/ooc/citations/JDEInc._110093_0427_12.pdf* http://www.osha.gov/ooc/citations/SuperiorFabricStructures_110095_0427_12.pdf* and
http://www.osha.gov/ooc/citations/CampionConstructionCo_108768_0427_12.pdf*.

 

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