Worker Fatally Struck by Falling Tree, Contractor Fined $31,175

This employee fatality was the company's second in 2011. The first fatality occurred in Pennsylvania on Feb. 24 under similar circumstances and resulted in similar citations.

OSHA has cited a Livermore, Calif.-based utility service contractor, The Davey Tree Surgery Co., for alleged workplace safety violations after a worker was killed at an Idaho City job site in June. The company is part of Kent, Ohio-based The Davey Tree Expert Co. Proposed penalties for the latest violations total $31,175.

"In this case, the employer failed to adhere to safe practices, which resulted in the death of an employee when he was struck by a falling tree," said Dean Ikeda, OSHA's regional administrator in Seattle. "The hazardous nature of tree clearing operations requires that employers take an aggressive and comprehensive stance toward workplace safety."

OSHA has issued one citation for serious violations involving failing to have adequate first-aid supplies, ensure that workers maintain a safe distance from trees being felled, evaluate the work area prior to the tree being felled, provide training for tool and equipment use, and provide training for determining tree length.

One other-than-serious violation has been cited for failing to report the fatality to OSHA within eight hours and to use the agency's toll-free hotline to report the incident after hours.

This employee fatality was the company's second in 2011. The first fatality occurred in Pennsylvania on Feb. 24 under similar circumstances and resulted in similar citations.

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