Wednesday, July 16, 2014

OSHA hands out $69,300 in fines to Providence busines

CORRECTION: The J-E originally reported the fines as $85,000. That number was incorrect, the actual total was $69,300. We apologize for the miscalculation.

J-E News Editor
Providence-based S&S Salvage, owned by Tim and Tammy Smith, and Rising Point LLC, which is co-owned by the Smiths, now face a total of $69,300 in fines from the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA).

The fines stem from an OSHA investigation of demolition work being done at 200 Commerce Drive in Madisonville, the site of the former Kruger International (KI) furniture plant.
Of the 16 violations, fifteen of those went to S&S, all of them listed as ‘serious’ violations of regulations. They were:
•Failure to conduct work in a regulated area. ($4,900)
•Failure to establish a decontamination area, equipped with an equipment room, shower area and clean room.
•Failure to post warnings signs in areas where asbestos work was being done.
•Failure to monitor asbestos exposure levels.
•Failure to ensure that a competent person conducted an exposure assessment immediately before beginning work.
•Failure to us vacuum cleaners equipped with high efficiency particulate air (HEPA) filters to collect dust and debris containing asbestos materials.
•Failure to use wet methods of wetting agents to control employee exposure to asbestos.
•Failure to conduct prompt clean-up and disposal of waste and debris contaminated with asbestos in leak-tight containers.
•Failure to use impermeable drop cloths on surfaces beneath removal activity.
•Failure to use impermeable drop cloths or plastic sheeting secured with duct tape to cover objects in the regulated area.
•Failure to ventilate area to move contaminated air towards a HEPA filtration or collection device.
•Failure to provide respirators and ensure that they were used during asbestos work.
•Failure to implement a respiratory protection program.
•Failure to provide and require the use of protective clothing.
•Failure to ensure that all employees participated in asbestos training program.
•Failure to designate a competent person on the worksite who was qualified and authorized to ensure worker safety and health.
Rising Point LLC. was fined $35,000 for failing to determine the presence, location and quantity of asbestos containing material at the work site. This violation was deemed ‘Serious Willful’ by OSHA investigators.
According to, “Studies have shown that exposure to asbestos may increase the risk of lung cancer and mesothelioma (a relatively rare cancer of the thin membranes that line the chest and abdomen). Although rare, mesothelioma is the most common form of cancer associated with asbestos exposure. In addition to lung cancer and mesothelioma, some studies have suggested an association between asbestos exposure and gastrointestinal and colorectal cancers, as well as an elevated risk for cancers of the throat, kidney, esophagus, and gallbladder.”
Tim Smith was unavailable for comment.

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