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Region 1 News Release: 08-1132-BOS/BOS 2008-239
Wed., Aug. 20, 2008
Contact: Ted Fitzgerald
Phone: 617-565-2074

U.S. Labor Department's OSHA cites New Hampshire contractor for cave-in hazard at Manchester jobsite
Alexis Construction faces over $25,000 in fines for unprotected excavation

CONCORD, N.H. - An unprotected excavation at a Manchester, N.H., worksite has resulted in $25,350 in proposed fines for a Manchester contractor. The U.S. Department of Labor's Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) cited Alexis Construction Co. LLC for alleged willful and serious violations of excavation safety standards after OSHA inspectors observed a company employee working in an unprotected excavation located in front of 32 N. Main St.

OSHA's inspection found that the vertical sidewalls of the six to seven-foot-deep excavation were not sloped, shored or otherwise protected against a collapse that could crush and bury anyone working in the excavation. OSHA standards require that all excavations five feet or deeper be guarded against cave-in hazards.

"The possibility of a cave-in resulting in death or disabling injury was real and present," said Rosemarie Ohar, OSHA's area director for New Hampshire. "A cave-in is swift, fierce and overwhelming and can turn an excavation into a burial ground in seconds. No employee should enter and work in an excavation until it is properly guarded against collapse."