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News » US » OSHA issues fines over Miami bridge collapse » published 25 Sep 2018

OSHA issues fines over Miami bridge collapse

The Occupational Safety & Health Administration (OSHA) has cited five companies for safety violations in connection with the collapse in March of a pedestrian bridge under construction in Florida.

The OSHA fines relate to the accident’s impact on employees of the companies – one worker was killed and five other employees sustained serious injuries when the bridge collapsed at the Florida International University campus in Miami.

In addition, five members of the public were killed and several others injured but OSHA's remit purely covers occupational safety and health.

The accident is also being investigated by the National Transportation Safety Board.

The five companies have collectively been issued with seven violations, totaling US$86,658 in proposed penalties. OSHA’s investigation determined that the companies failed to protect workers when indications of a potential bridge collapse were evident. Violations included exposing employees to crushing and fall hazards; and allowing multiple employees to connect to an improperly installed lifeline.

The companies cited by OSHA are:

  • Figg Bridge Engineers Inc - a civil and structural engineering company;
  • Network Engineering Services Inc (doing business as Bolton Perez & Assoc.) -  a construction engineering and inspection firm;
  • Structural Technologies LLC (doing business as Structural Technologies/VSL), specializing in post-tensioning in bridges and buildings;
  • Munilla Construction Management LLC - a bridge and building construction company; and
  • The Structural Group of South Florida Inc -  a contractor specializing in concrete formwork.

“Collectively, these employers failed to take appropriate action and provide the necessary protections to their employees while they were working on the bridge on the day it collapsed,” said OSHA regional administrator Kurt Petermeyer.

The companies have 15 business days from receipt of the citations and proposed penalties to comply, request an informal conference with OSHA’s area director, or contest the findings before the independent Occupational Safety & Health Review Commission.

 

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This article was published on 25 Sep 2018 (last updated on 25 Sep 2018).

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