Contractor Fined $122,960 for Cave-In Hazards

The willful citation alleges that employees were working in a trench at a depth greater than 7 feet without cave-in protection during an October 2010 inspection.

OSHA has issued A. Lamp Concrete Contractors Inc., a road building contractor in Schamburg, Ill., that engages in concrete and underground construction, one willful, one serious, and two repeat safety citations for failing to protect workers from cave-ins during trenching operations at a jobsite in Morton Grove, Ill. The company faces proposed penalties of $122,960.

"Cave-ins are a leading cause of worker fatalities during excavations," said Diane Turek, OSHA's area director in Des Plaines. "A. Lamp Concrete Contractors has shown blatant disregard for OSHA's regulations by failing to implement safety procedures at its jobsites. OSHA is committed to protecting workers when employers fail to do so."

The willful citation, with a proposed penalty of $69,300, alleges that employees were working in a trench at a depth greater than 7 feet without cave-in protection during an inspection on Oct. 4, 2010. A trench box that would protect workers was located near the site but not installed.

Based on the October inspection, the company was issued a repeat citation with a penalty of $29,700 for failing to provide a safe means of access and egress for employees working in an excavation. The company received an additional repeat citation with a proposed penalty of $20,000 based on an inspection that occurred Sept. 7, 2010. In September, OSHA inspectors observed workers in a trench at a depth greater than 9 feet without adequate cave-in protection, as shoring had been partially installed but did not meet OSHA requirements.

The serious citation with a proposed penalty of $3,960 was issued for failing to provide hardhats for employees exposed to overhead hazards.

Both inspections were conducted under OSHA's national emphasis program on trenching and excavation. The company has been inspected by OSHA 12 times since 1999, resulting in 13 citations, including six prior citations for lack of cave-in protection at various worksites.

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