Two Ironworkers Injured, Company Cited by OSHA

OSHA cited Lunar Steel Inc., Monroe Township, N.J., and proposed\r\n$112,050 against the firm for violations of OSHA standards following\r\nan accident that injured two workers.

OSHA cited Lunar Steel Inc., Monroe Township, N.J., and proposed $112,050 against the firm for violations of OSHA standards following an accident that injured two workers.

According to OSHA, an investigation began March 22 after the agency was notified by police of the partial collapse of a steel-framework building under construction in Fairfield, N.J.

Two employees sustained punctured legs and multiple fractures when the steelwork on which they were working collapsed, allowing them to fall more than 30 feet.

OSHA area director David Ippolito said, the company willfully violated OSHA standards by failing to provide fall protection and ensuring that employees used it while working or walking on high steel. The company also failed to secure the steel framework before adding joints; failed to secure and bridge long-span joists; failed to properly support the steel structure to prevent collapse, and failed to ensure that employees not climb on the edge of aerial lifts.

"The willful nature of the violations is unmistakable," said Ippolito. "This employer exhibited a significant disregard for the health and safety of its employees. Following the collapse, the employer pledged to both OSHA and the Township of Fairfield that they would use the required fall protection. But despite the serious injuries, warnings from OSHA, and promises to comply, the firm took no substantial action to eliminate numerous fall hazards and other safety hazards at the site."

The company was also cited for a series of serious violations including:

  • failure to provide fall protection training;
  • failure to provide fall protection to employees prior to the start of OSHA''s inspection;
  • failure to ensure that employees working in aerial lifts were properly tied off; and
  • failure to use tag lines to control loads being lifted by crane.

The company has until Oct. 13 to contest the citations.

by Virginia Sutcliffe

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