OSHA quote includes first blatant violation under Biden administration | 2021-08-19

Washington – The recent OSHA quote from a Boston contractor includes the first blatant violation published during the Biden administration, acting agency administrator Jim Frederick confirmed on Aug. 18.

Speaking on a conference call with reporters, Frederick and Jeffrey Erskine, acting OSHA regional administrator in Boston, detailed a February 24 incident in which two employees working at a Boston excavation site were fatally injured when a reverse dump truck struck and pushed them. in an unprotected trench.

OSHA proposed $ 1,350,884 in penalties against Atlantic Coast Utilities LLC / Advanced Utilities Inc., resulting from 28 deliberate, repeated, serious and non-serious violations. The agency concluded that the company neglected to provide training to avoid work-related hazards and failed to conduct site inspections related to the recognition of the hazards.

According to an agency press release, OSHA has repeatedly inspected Atlantic Coast Utilities and its owner, Laurence Moloney, as well as its predecessors and successors. Moloney and his organizations have consistently ignored citations and OSHA requests to reduce risk, the agency says.

During the conference call, Frederick said the incidents date back to 2001. The history of violations has allowed OSHA to use its blatant citation policy, allowing the agency to propose separate penalties for each violation. .

“Employers who repeatedly circumvent the law and willfully endanger the lives of their workers are crooks,” said Frederick. “Have confidence that the Ministry of Labor is there to hold bad actors accountable. “

Frederick added that the monetary amount of the proposed fines does not reflect an agency effort to be stronger on sanctions, but rather to remain consistent, “whether in Boston or elsewhere.”

He continued, “Our intention, our enforcement objective is to get employers to provide safe workplaces. So, aside from the penalties, we want to make sure that the risks are mitigated, corrected and that occupational safety and health are improved. Our penalty structure is set for us, and we follow this process to the best of our ability, using the tools at our disposal to ensure that we are able to fully assess and address these items in front of us. “

Kevin A. Perras

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