Southern Wood Works Cited for Exposing Workers to Fall Hazards

The Freeport, Fla. company is facing proposed penalties of more than $71,000.

Southern Wood Works LLC was cited for five safety violations following an August 2014 inspection at a Compass Point Way residence in Watersound, Fla., according to a news release by OSHA. Citations were issued for failure to provide employees with fall protection equipment and exposure to falls from heights of up to 17 feet. Proposed penalties total $71,069.

"This employer has a history of violating OSHA standards and has shown little regard for the safety of its employees. We are still finding safety hazards identified during prior inspections and easily identifiable safety hazards, such as lack of fall protection and personal protective equipment," said Brian Sturtecky, director of OSHA's Jacksonville Office. "Turning a blind eye to unsafe acts or hazards in the workplace can lead to serious injury or death. Employers have an obligation under the law to provide a safe healthful workplace free from known hazards."

A willful citation was issued for allowing employees to work from ladder jack scaffolds without fall protection equipment while a repeat citation was issued for the employer's failure to ensure workers using a pneumatic nail gun wore safety glasses to protect them from flying debris or nails. Two serious citations were issued for allowing employees to work on and under scaffolds without wearing hard hats, which exposed them to falling debris. The employer exposed workers to shock and burn hazards from dry, rotted wiring with broken insulation and failed to ensure a first aid kit was available at the work site.

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