As other organizations, like the NTSB, are busy analyzing the root cause of the pedestrian bridge collapse that killed 6 people and injured 8 others in Florida in March, OSHA has finished their investigation and issued safety violations to 5 different contractors.
On September 16, the US Department of Labor (DOL) and OSHA announced that they issued a total of 7 safety violations spread out amongst the five contractors after 1 construction worker was killed and 5 others sustained serious injuries as a result of the collapse. The other fatalities and injury victims were pedestrians and motorists.
Collectively, these 7 violations totaled $86,658. That may not sound like a lot of money for an accident that caused so many tragic deaths and injuries, but there are many civil suits and possible criminal negligence charges that could come following the finished investigations.
According to the OSHA press release: “OSHA cited 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.”
The violations included General Duty Clause violations for not provided a workplace free of recognized hazards, employers not providing horizontal lifelines, and personal fall arrest system citations. You can read the official citation letters from OSHA for each company here: Figg Bridge Engineers Inc., Network Engineering Services Inc., Structural Technologies LLC, Munilla Construction Management LLC, and The Structural Group of South Florida Inc.
“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 A. Petermeyer.