The Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) has fined Blue Nile Contractors $210,037 for failing to protect employees from trench collapse and electrical hazards.
OSHA says its inspectors saw workers exposed to trenching and excavation hazards at a site in Kansas City, Missouri, in May 2019. It cited the Birmingham, Missouri-based contractor for four repeat and five serious safety violations of trenching and electrical hazards.
OSHA said it placed Blue Nile in its Severe Violator Enforcement Program.
“Trench collapses can be quick and cause serious or fatal injuries, but they are preventable,” said OSHA Kansas City area director Karena Lorek in a prepared statement. “Employers must ensure that there is a safe way to enter and exit a trench, cave-in protection is used, all materials are placed away from the trench’s edge, standing water and other hazards are addressed, and no one enters a trench before it has been properly inspected.”
Blue Nile has 15 business days from receipt of the citations and penalties to comply, request an informal conference with OSHA’s area director, or contest the findings before the independent Occupational Safety and Health Review Commission.