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OSHA Hands Out Fines for Fatal Crane Accident in Oshkosh, Wis.

Oshkosh, Wis., January 2013—Federal OSHA has fined two contractors for what it calls willful violation of safety standards, which ultimate led to a fatal crane accident at a bridge-construction project in Oshkosh last July. One contractor was fined $105,000 for one willful and five serious violations, including allowing a crane to travel with a suspended load, failing to train competent and qualified persons on their roles, not adequately attaching the crane to a barge, failing to use appropriate signaling methods, and failing to meet the requirements of a critical lift plan.

OSHA also placed one of the contractors in its Severe Violator Enforcement Program, under which employers that commit willful, repeat, or failure-to-abate violations face stiffer fines and more frequent unannounced inspections. The other contractor involved in the accident was fined $13,220.

In the accident, two barge-mounted cranes were placing a 52-ton precast concrete girder when one crane’s boom collapsed. The truck driver who had delivered the girder was killed by the falling boom, and the operator of the overturned crane was seriously injured when he was dumped out of the crane cab onto the barge deck.

The two contractors have 15 business days to contest OSHA’s findings. –


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