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Region 9 News Release: 12-200-SAN (SF-30)
Feb. 9, 2012
Contact: Jose A. Carnevali     Deanne Amaden
Phone: 415-625-2631     415-625-2630
Email: carnevali.jose@dol.gov     amaden.deanne@dol.gov

US Labor Department's OSHA cites Pacific Stevedoring Services
in American Samoa for safety violations following worker fatality

HONOLULU – The U.S. Department of Labor's Occupational Safety and Health Administration has cited Pacific Stevedoring Services, a longshoring company based in Pago Pago, American Samoa, with five safety violations following the death of a worker at the StarKist wharf in Atu'u, American Samoa.

OSHA began an investigation Aug. 8 after an employee was struck in the head by the boom of a crane, being used to unload fish, onboard the Pacific Princess tuna fishing vessel. OSHA's investigation determined that the crane's hydraulic cylinder failed when the load exceeded the crane's capacity, and that communication between the signalman and crane operator was ineffective.

One willful violation with a $42,000 penalty was cited for failing to ensure the shipboard crane's working load was not exceeded. 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.

Three serious violations with $9,100 in penalties include failing to provide personal protective equipment such as hard hats and safety shoes, ensure that the signal person used conventional crane signals to communicate with the vessel's crane operator and provide accident prevention training to the foreman. 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.

An other-than-serious violation with no monetary penalty was cited for failing to record