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Tuesday, February 7, 2012

OSHA cites Clara Construction in Jersey City, NJ, for exposing workers to fall hazards

The seal of the United States Department of LaborImage via Wikipedia

The U.S. Department of Labor's Occupational Safety and Health Administration has cited Clara Construction LLC for one repeat and 10 serious safety violations at a Jersey City work site. These carry total proposed penalties of $46,200. OSHA initiated an inspection as part of a local emphasis program for fall hazards.

"Falls remain one of the leading causes of fatalities on construction sites," said Kris Hoffman, director of OSHA's Parsippany Area Office. "Employers are responsible for providing workers with basic fall protection to prevent potential injuries."

The repeat violation, with a $9,240 penalty, is failing to protect workers from fall hazards. A repeat violation exists when an employer previously has been cited for the same or a similar violation of a standard, regulation, rule or order at any other facility in federal enforcement states within the last five years. The company was cited for the same violation in 2010.

The serious violations, with $36,960 in penalties, include failing to protect workers from fall and impalement hazards, ensure scaffold platforms were laid correctly, provide proper ladder rung construction, make sure guardrails were at sufficient heights and makeshift devices were not created to increase platform height, inspect scaffolds, provide proper scaffold training, provide guardrails near wall holes and provide protection around surface holes. A serious violation occurs when there is substantial probability that death or serious physical harm could result from a hazard about which the employer knew or should have known.

For detailed information on fall protection standards, visit OSHA's website at

Clara Construction LLC, which employs 14 workers, has 15 business days from receipt of the citations to comply, ask for an informal conference with OSHA's area director or contest the citations and proposed penalties before the independent Occupational Safety and Health Review Commission.

To ask questions, obtain compliance assistance, file a complaint or report workplace hospitalizations, fatalities or situations posing imminent danger to workers, the public should call OSHA's toll-free hotline at 800-321-OSHA (6742) or the agency's Parsippany office at 973-263-1003.

Under the Occupational Safety and Health Act of 1970, employers are responsible for providing safe and healthful workplaces for their employees. OSHA's role is to ensure these conditions for America's working men and women by setting and enforcing standards, and providing training, education and assistance. For more information, visit