Concrete Maker Cited After Crane Injury

March 3, 2014

OSHA cited County Materials Corp., a manufacturer of precast concrete products, for 18 serious safety violations following an employee injury at an Edleron, Wis., job site on Sept. 19, 2013. A truck driver had his foot severed and femur crushed when a cable on a trolley boom crane broke and pinned him against a concrete riser.

"Struck-by hazards are one of the leading causes of injuries for construction and transportation workers. Each day, County Materials has a responsibility to train and protect its workers from hazards that they will encounter," said Robert Bonack, OSHA's area director in Appleton. "Workers have a right to a safe workplace-one that is free from hazards that can cause serious injury."

Eighteen serious safety citations involve failing to establish safe work practices when placing precast concrete material; inspect trolley boom cranes and wire ropes; equip trolley boom cranes with a crane level indicator, boom angle or radius indicator; ensure materials are rigged by a qualified rigger; and ensure employees are trained in the safe operation of trolley boom cranes to prevent inadvertent disconnection of the load. The company was also cited for placing employees close to suspended loads.

A serious violation occurs when there is substantial probability that death or serious physical harm could result from a hazard about which the employer knew or should have known.

OSHA has proposed fines of $56,700. The Plover-based company employs approximately 1,250 workers at multiple Wisconsin locations. OSHA has inspected County Materials eight times since 2001 and has issued multiple citations.

The company has 15 business days from receipt of its 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.