OSHA Cites Cleveland Cement Contractors for Safety Violations Following Casino Parking Garage Collapse

An eager crowd stood in line for hours on May 14, waiting their turn to enter Ohio’s first casino, Horseshoe Casino Cleveland. Thousands of gamblers translate to thousands of needed parking space, so could the rush to provide parking for all those people have led to safety shortcuts? On May 9, OSHA cited Cleveland Cement Contractors Inc. for six serious safety violations, including not following design and construction standards, following an investigation into the partial collapse on Dec. 16, 2011 of the casino's second floor parking garage.

Several workers suffered sprains and strains during the incident in downtown Cleveland, which occurred during concrete placement. The violations include failing to properly design, construct and maintain concrete forming and shoring systems; avoid eccentric loading of shoring stringers; secure shoring stringers to shoring heads as needed; adequately inspect forming and shoring prior to and during concrete placement; guard all exposed protruding reinforcing steel; and ensure that workers use face protection while operating a pneumatic hose.

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. Proposed fines total $38,000.

“Contractors are responsible for knowing and following recognized construction standards, and ensuring that all proper precautions are taken on job sites to prevent workers from being injured,” said Howard Eberts, OSHA’s area director in Cleveland. “OSHA is committed to protecting workers on the job.”

Cleveland Cement Contractors Inc. specializes in the construction of parking garages and other cast-in-place concrete structures. The company has 15 business days from receipt of its citations and proposed penalties to comply, meet with OSHA's area director or contest the findings before the independent Occupational Safety and Health Review Commission.

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