OSHA cites Elgin-based contractor $59,290 for trenching violation

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The U.S. Department of Labor Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) has issued a $59,290 citation against Kellenberger Plumbing & Underground in Elgin for allowing workers to work in an unsafe underground trench at  2708 Showplace Dr., Naperville.

OSHA says in its news release that the company has been cited “for one willfull and one serious safety violation for not providing cave-in protection or having a competent person on site to remove employees from a hazardous area. The OSHA says the company has had three violations since 2012.

“The agency opened an investigation under OSHA’s National Emphasis Program on trenching and excavation after receiving a complaint that two workers were removing a sewer line in a trench more than 8-feet deep at a workplace under construction in Naperville on March 4, 2016,” the news release said.

“An unprotected trench can bury a worker under thousands of pounds of soil in seconds and cause severe or fatal injuries,” said Kathy Webb, OSHA’s area director at its Calumet City area office. “Since 2012, OSHA has now cited Kellenberger Plumbing three times for violating federal trenching standards. The company knows that every trench deeper than five feet must have cave-in protection. They are putting their employees in serious danger by ignoring federal safety standards.”

 

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