New Jersey Contractor Facing Penalties After OSHA Finds Lead and Fall Hazard Violations

Scot Christopher Rule LLC was inspected in February after not providing proof of abatement related to a 2017 investigation.

A New Jersey-based painting and wall covering contractor has been cited by OSHA for exposing workers to lead and other hazards at a worksite in Easton, Pennsylvania, the Labor Department announced Wednesday.

The agency initiated a follow-up inspection on Scot Christopher Rule LLC in February after the company did not provide proof of abatement, or evidence of correcting safety issues, related to a 2017 investigation. Inspectors found that the company committed four willful violations including failing to provide employees with training concerning the dangers of lead and hazardous chemicals and not conducting an initial determination to identify employees’ levels of lead exposures.

Scot Christopher Rule also did not have a written lead compliance program and permitted improper use of respirators, according to inspectors.

OSHA also completed a second inspection in May after receiving a complaint that the contractor exposed employees operating aerial lifts to fall hazards, leading to additional violations. Now, the company is facing $104,637 in fines.

“Overexposure to lead can result in a wide range of debilitating medical conditions," Jean Kulp, the OSHA Area Director in Allentown, Pennsylvania, said in a statement. “The most effective way to minimize exposure is to use engineering controls, provide training, and use protective clothing and equipment.” The company has 15 days from receipt of citations to either comply, request an informal conference with the OSHA area director or contest the findings.

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