OSHA News Release - Table of Contents|
Region 1 News Release: 10-1537-BOS/BOS 2010-453
Nov. 9, 2010
Contact: Ted Fitzgerald
Dracut, Mass., contractor faces more than $32,000 in fines from US Labor
Department's OSHA for excavation hazards at Belmont, Mass., jobsite
ANDOVER, Mass. – The U.S. Department of Labor's Occupational Safety and Health Administration has cited Albanese D&S Inc. for alleged repeat and serious violations of safety standards following OSHA's inspection of a worksite located at Winn's Brook in Belmont, Mass. The Dracut, Mass., contractor faces a total of $32,400 in proposed fines for excavation hazards identified during OSHA's inspection.
OSHA found Albanese workers installing concrete culverts in an excavation deeper than 5 feet that lacked protection against a possible collapse of its sidewalls. The excavation also lacked a ladder or other safe means for the workers to enter and exit. OSHA had cited the company in 2009 for similar hazards at worksites in Lowell and Tewksbury, Mass. Due to the recurring nature of these hazards, OSHA issued Albanese two repeat citations, with $29,400 in proposed fines. A repeat violation is issued when an employer previously has been cited for the same or a similar violation of a standard, regulation, rule or order at any other facility in federal enforcement states within the last five years.
"The walls of an excavation can collapse suddenly and without warning, burying workers beneath soil and debris before they have a chance to react or escape," said Jeffrey A. Erskine, OSHA's area director for Middlesex and Essex counties in Massachusetts. "The fact that no collapse occurred in no way minimizes the gravity of this hazard, nor does it relieve the company of its responsibility to ensure that excavations are effectively protected before workers enter them."