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U.S. Department of Labor Cites South Florida Utility After Employee Sustains Fatal Injuries


The U.S. Department of Labor’s Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) cited Douglas N. Higgins Inc., a South Florida utility company, after an employee suffered fatal injuries at a Naples Park worksite. The company faces $162,596 in proposed penalties, the maximum allowed.

The employee suffered the fatal injuries when a steel plate fell on him as he installed sewer lines. OSHA cited the company for permitting employees to work in a trench without adequate cave-in protection; failing to provide safe entry and exit from a trench, perform atmospheric testing, and train employees on signals used when moving trench boxes; and allowing employees to use defective equipment to hoist a compactor. The Agency cited the company for a similar violation in January 2017 after three employees succumbed to toxic gases while working in a manhole.

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