OSHA Cites Trucking Company for Willful Confined Space Violation

The agency has proposed $113,400 in fines against Sherman Brothers Trucking Inc., doing business as Team Transport Inc.

OSHA has filed an enforcement action that includes 11 alleged violations by Sherman Brothers Trucking Inc., doing business as Team Transport Inc., at its Crossett, Ark., facility. The agency has proposed $113,400 in fines against the company after conducting an investigation following the death of a temporary worker who died while cleaning the inside of a tanker trailer. He was found unconscious and died from an oxygen-deficient atmosphere, according to OSHA.

That brought a willful violation for allegedly failing to maintain air monitoring equipment and evaluate permit-required confined space conditions prior to entry. "Confined spaces can potentially contain hazardous atmospheres. In this case, the employer failed to implement all aspects of a confined space program, including training its workers," said Carlos Reynolds, OSHA's area director in Little Rock. "This lack of regard for worker safety is unacceptable and led to a loss of life."

There are seven serious violations cited, including failing to guard open floor holes to prevent falling into the next level, stabilize a platform used to access a tanker cleaning area with railings or posts to prevent fall hazards, and train workers on confined spaces and Hazard Communication. The employer also failed to implement respirator, confined space, and HazCom programs, according to OSHA.

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