OSHA has cited RNC Industries LLC, a construction contractor, for repeat and serious violations of workplace safety standards following a March 29 decking collapse that injured a worker at a Manhattan construction site. The Holtsville, NY contractor faces a total of $58,410 in proposed penalties following an inspection by the agency.
RNC Industries' employees were constructing a deck on the second floor level when one of the employees stepped on a support beam that collapsed, causing him to fall 15 feet to the ground.
OSHA's inspection found that the support system had not been properly erected, and the support beams were damaged and had not been inspected for defects. Additionally, the employees lacked fall protection, exposing them to falls of up to 15 feet. They had not been trained to recognize and minimize fall hazards.
"This incident, and the resulting worker injury, would not have occurred had the support system been inspected and properly erected, and if the employees had been provided adequate fall protection and training," said Kay Gee, OSHA's area director for Manhattan, Brooklyn and Queens. “This case clearly shows what can result when required safeguards are ignored."
Falls are the leading cause of worker fatalities in the construction industry.
OSHA issued the contractor one repeat citation, with a fine of $34,650, for the lack of fall protection. A similar hazard was cited in 2010 at a Bronx work site. Four serious citations, with $23,760 in fines, were issued for the support system and training hazards.
OSHA has created a Stop Falls Web page at www.osha.gov/stopfalls with detailed information in English and Spanish on fall protection standards. The page offers fact sheets, posters and videos that vividly illustrate various fall hazards and appropriate preventive measures.