Contractor Cited for Fall Protection Violations

OSHA cited SSI Inc. in Fort Smith, Ark., for alleged safety and\r\nhealth violations with penalties totaling $74,300.

OSHA cited SSI Inc. in Fort Smith, Ark., for alleged safety and health violations with penalties totaling $74,300.

SSI is a general building contractor that employs about 80 workers, with corporate offices in Fort Smith.

The alleged violations were discovered during an OSHA investigation that began April 18, 2001 in response to a complaint concerning a fall at a construction site. The company was cited with one alleged willful, three alleged serious, and one alleged repeat violation.

The alleged willful violation was for failing to provide adequate fall protection for employees walking or working on walkways approximately 17 feet above the ground.

The three alleged serious violations consisted of failing to provide adequate covers to protect employees from tripping on or stepping into open floor holes, failing to properly identify hole covers, and failing to adequately train employees in the hazards to which they may be exposed to while working at heights.

The alleged repeat violation consisted of failing to provide fall protection for employees working on open-sided floors approximately 17 feet above the ground . A repeat violation is one in which the employer was cited for a violation of the same or similar standard within the past three years.

SSI has 15 working days from receipt of the citations to comply with the citations, request an informal conference with the Little Rock area director, or contest the citations and penalties before the independent Occupational Safety and Health Review Commission.

by Virginia Sutcliffe

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