Miami, Fla., Contractor Cited by OSHA following Carbon Monoxide Incident

Dec. 7, 2011
General contractor Trans Florida Development Corp. of Miami has been cited by OSHA for one willful health and one serious safety violation following an incident that occurred in June at a work site at Ocean Drive and First Street, where workers were installing a new drain system. A worker using a powered saw to cut a hole in a storm drain box was overexposed to carbon monoxide from the saw and had to be taken to a hospital for treatment. OSHA’s proposed penalties total $66,990.

The willful health violation, with a $61,600 penalty, was cited for failing to evaluate the job site and implement procedures to ensure workers were not exposed to toxic substances while working in a confined space. A willful violation is one committed with intentional knowing or voluntary disregard for the law's requirements, or with plain indifference to worker safety and health.

The serious safety violation, with a $5,390 penalty, was cited for failing to provide training on confined space hazards. 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.

“This employer knew the proper safety precautions and procedures associated with working in confined spaces, yet chose to ignore those requirements and ultimately failed to protect the workers,” said Darlene Fossum, OSHA’s area director in Fort Lauderdale.

Trans Florida Development Corp. has 15 business days from receipt of the citations and proposed penalties to comply, request an informal conference with Fossum or contest the findings before the independent Occupational Safety and Health Review Commission.

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