Rental Company Fined in Crane Overturn Fatality

OSHA has cited Hawthorne Pacific Corp. for 13 alleged serious violations and two other-than-serious violations.

OSHA announced it has cited Hawthorne Pacific Corp. in Kahului, Maui, Hawaii, for 13 alleged serious violations and two other-than-serious violations of safety standards. It is a heavy equipment rental and repair company; OSHA investigated after an Oct. 23, 2012, incident in which one of its cranes fatally crushed a worker.

"Hawthorne Pacific Corp. failed in its responsibility to ensure that workers followed the manufacturer's requirements for the safe operation and maintenance of equipment," said Galen Lemke, director of OSHA's Honolulu Area Office. "This tragic accident could have easily been prevented had the employer addressed these issues."

Inspectors found that outriggers designed to stabilize the truck-mounted crane were not extended, allowing it to tip, and that the company failed to properly inspect and maintain records of critical items on the crane, which had been out of service for more than six months but had not undergone a complete inspection before being used. The company also failed to properly tag keys for the truck crane as "do not use" because a warning indicator wasn't functioning, according to OSHA.

The proposed fines total $70,000.

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