The Occupational Safety and Health Administration has proposed $136,000 in fines against a Massachusetts contractor that was working on a project involving the removal of asbestos-containing material at Boston Beth Israel Hospital last fall. OSHA inspectors discover 19 alleged safety violations, among them a failure to conduct an initial asbestos exposure assessment, a lack of protective clothing, and several respirator-related deficiencies.
Asbestos exposure is a serious health hazard to workers. Research has shown that prolonged exposure without appropriate safeguards in place can lead to lung cancer and other diseases.
The Danvers-based company received one willful citation with a $55,000 proposed fine for not establishing a regulated work area. OSHA also issued the company 17 serious citations totaling $80,000 in fines for the other safety issues and one other-than-serious citation with a $1,000 fine for not providing injury and illness logs in a timely fashion. The company has 15 business days from receipt of the citations to comply, participate in an informal conference with the OSHA area director, or contest the findings.
Source: New England Contractor Fined for Asbestos Hazards, Respiratory Deficiencies, OHSOnline.com, March 3, 2010
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