Occupational Safety and Health Administration Region 5, Chicago, has proposed $75,000 in penalties against Illinois Masonry Corp. (Lake Zurich) for alleged
Occupational Safety and Health Administration Region 5, Chicago, has proposed $75,000 in penalties against Illinois Masonry Corp. (Lake Zurich) for alleged willful and serious violations of workplace safety and health standards at a seven-story senior housing complex in Chicago. The alleged violations stem from a December 2005 accident in which an ungrouted, fourth-level lintel beam apparently failed, triggering collapse of prestressed hollow core plank that claimed two workers. OSHA Region 5 staff allege that Illinois Masonry failed to install required reinforcing bars and grout as part of the masonry wall construction; ensure walls were properly braced to prevent overturning; properly train employees regarding grouting methods; and, conduct necessary inspections to ensure masonry walls were properly constructed.
Illinois Masonry was a subcontractor to Joseph J. Duffy Co., general contractor for the Holiness Homes of Vision complex, which has been shut down since the accident. An investigation resulted in citations to the subcontractor for one alleged willful and three alleged serious violations of federal workplace safety and health regulations, including the failure to comply with OSHA’s general duty clause, wall bracing, employee training and competent person inspection standards. Failing to ensure that employees are constructing buildings as required by the structural drawings devised for a project can lead to devastating results, says OSHA Area Director Gary Anderson in Calumet City, Ill. Contractors are obligated to provide craftsmanship that not only satisfies expected results in quality, but also expected results regarding employee safety and health.