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OSHA Fines OH Bridge Painting Company for Fall, Scaffold Hazards

A company's enrollment in OSHA's Severe Violator Enforcement Program is about as far from a badge of honor as can possibly be envisioned. APBN Inc., a bridge painting company from Campbell, Ohio, is a new member of the club, with OSHA finding a number of material errors and omissions related to the company's supervision and protection of employees working on an Ohio Department of Transportation bridge project.

OSHA issued APBN Inc. a number of willful and serious citations for failing to provide adequate protections for employees painting a bridge more than 40 feet above the Maumee River late last year. An agency spokesperson said that the lack of safety precautions increased the risk of falls and scaffolding accidents, as well as other hazards.

In announcing the penalties, Julie Hovi, the agency's area director in Toledo, stated that, "There is no excuse for failing to provide protection for employees facing fall and water hazards."

The company was fined $147,000 for three willful citations, as follows: not having workers protected against falling while accessing suspended scaffold platforms 40-50 feet off the ground; not ensuring that fall protection was provided to workers and always worn; and not having life-saving equipment readily at hand to assist any worker who might fall into the water.

An additional $46,200 was levied on APBN Inc. for a number of serious violations involving ladder misuse and scaffold problems.

Related Resource: Occupational Health & Safety, "Bridge Contractor Faces $193,200 in Fines for Water, Fall Hazards" April 26, 2011

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