OSHA cited 12 companies in New York and proposed penalties totaling $101,600 against the firms for 80 alleged serious violations of OSHA standards.
The action results from a six-month investigation following a Jan. 31 fire at the building in Manhattan''s garment district, in which an employee of one of the building''s tenants was killed as he attempted to scale down the outside of the building.
A serious violation is defined as a condition which exists where there is a substantial possibility that death or serious physical harm can result.
The violations for which the employers were cited included:
- no fire alarm;
- obstruction on fire stairs;
- locked exits;
- exit aisles too narrow;
- failure to maintain sprinkler heads;
- failure to maintain stairway exit doors;
- failure to provide fire extinguishers;
- failure to provide emergency evacuation training;
- failure to mount fire extinguisher in a visible place;
- failure to provide adequate headroom in an exit corridor;
- failure to post appropriate exit signs and, on door that could be mistaken as exits, signs reading "not an exit;" and
- failure to practice good housekeeping.
The companies have 15 working days to contest the citations.
by Virginia Sutcliffe