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Region 5 News Release: 12-415-CHI
March 13, 2012
Contact: Scott Allen      Rhonda Burke
Phone:            312-353-6976
Email: allen.scott@dol.gov      burke.rhonda@dol.gov

US Department of Labor's OSHA cites G & J Enterprises after
worker injured during trench collapse in Loveland, Ohio

LOVELAND, Ohio – The U.S. Department of Labor's Occupational Safety and Health Administration has cited Morrow-based G & J Enterprises with three safety – including one willful – violations, after a worker suffered a back injury when a trench caved in during the installation of an 8-foot-deep sewer line on Jan. 19 in Loveland. Proposed penalties total $49,200.

The willful violation was for failing to provide workers with cave-in protection. 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.

Two serious violations include failing to require workers to use head protection as well as to train workers to recognize the hazards involved in excavation work. 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.

"G & J Enterprises is responsible for ensuring that its employees are properly protected from known workplace hazards such as trench cave-ins, a leading cause of injuries and deaths in excavation work," said Bill Wilkerson, OSHA's area director in Cincinnati. "OSHA is committed to protecting workers, especially when employers fail to do so."

OSHA standards mandate that all excavations 5 feet or deeper be protected against collapse. Detailed information on trenching and excavation hazards is available at http://www.osha.gov/