Seattle Tunnel Partners was cited for safety violations and fined $2,050 in connection with an incident in February that injured a subcontractor’s employees. The subcontractor, Central Steel, was cited in April for two safety violations related to the incident and fined $2,050. That citation is under appeal.
As general contractor of the project, Seattle Tunnel Partners is responsible for ensuring the overall safety of all workers on the project, including subcontractors’ employees.
The Washington Department of Labor & Industries (L&I) cited Seattle Tunnel Partners for one serious violation and fined the company $1,750 for not ensuring that all protruding pieces of rebar were protected to prevent the possibility of impalement if a worker were to fall on it.
On Feb. 12, one worker was hospitalized and several others injured when the rebar wall they were working on detached from a concrete wall, causing them to fall. Falls from elevation are the number one cause of worker hospitalizations and fatalities in Washington.
The L&I investigation also found three general violations related to the employer’s OSHA 300 log recordkeeping, which is used to track workplace injuries. Employers are required to record all significant injuries, deaths, and hospitalizations within seven days of occurrence, including recording the number of days off work when prescribed by a medical provider.
The inspection found that Seattle Tunnel Partners had not recorded medically required missed work days for one injury incident in 2012, nine in 2013 and seven in 2014.
Seattle Tunnel Partners was fined $100 for each of the three years.
The employer has 15 working days to appeal. Penalty money paid in connection with a citation is placed in the workers’ compensation supplemental pension fund, helping workers and families of those who have died on the job.