U.S. barge builder Sterling Shipyard LP was cited for 16 serious, repeat and failure-to-abate violations by the U.S. Department of Labor’s Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) for continuing to expose workers to safety hazards, including dangerous machinery, high noise levels without appropriate hearing protection and falls from heights above 6 feet, OSHA said.
The proposed penalties total $305,100.
OSHA had originally cited the Port Neches barge builder in October 2013 for 13 serious safety and health violations with a fine of $62,550. When Sterling did not respond to the citations, a follow-up inspection was conducted in January 2014 that revealed Sterling had not corrected several of the hazardous conditions previously cited.
“By failing to abate violations cited from an earlier inspection, Sterling chose to ignore worker safety and expose employees to hazards that could lead to illness, injury or death. OSHA will not tolerate such negligence,” said Mark Briggs, OSHA’s area director in the Houston South Area Office.
Sterling was cited for three failure-to-abate violations, with a penalty of $214,200, for continuing to expose workers to machine, struck-by and fall hazards.
Four repeat violations, with a penalty of $50,400, were cited for failing to equip surfaces 5 feet or higher with guardrails and replace worn and frayed electrical cords.
The remaining 12 violations, including nine serious with a penalty of $40,500, were cited for failing to train workers who were operating forklifts; to perform regular crane inspections and guard portable machinery; and to provide hearing protection for workers exposed to noise.
Press Release, July 16th, 2014