OSHA: Contractor Willfully Exposed Workers to Dangers of Possible Trench Cave-In

OSHA has issued multiple citations to the Yannuzzi Group of Kinnelon, N.J.

After a complaint was filed regarding an imminent danger situation of workers in an 8-foot-deep trench with no protective system in place, an OSHA investigation resulted in one willful and one serious violation for the Yannuzzi Group of Kinnelon, N.J.

The willful citation was issued due to Yannuzzi's alleged failure to use an adequate protective system to prevent its workers from being injured if the trench caved in, while the serious citation was issued for excavated materials being placed too close to the edge of the excavation.

"Randolph Township provided trench protection at the job site, yet Yannuzzi Group deliberately decided not to use it. The company's action is intolerable. Yannuzzi needlessly jeopardized worker safety by choosing not to implement basic measures to prevent cave-ins," said Kris Hoffman, director of OSHA's Parsippany Area Office. "The fatality rate for excavation work is 112 percent higher than the rate for general construction. Trench protection systems are more than a required OSHA safety standard; they are a matter of life and death."

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