Connecticut contractor cited for exposing workers to mercury

OSHA faults employer for lax respirator program

Posted December 5, 2017

OSHA cited a Connecticut construction contractor for exposing workers to mercury and respirator hazards from a boiler dismantling project. The employer faces penalties of $329,548.

Agency inspectors responded to workers’ complaints about perceived safety issues and found employees were being exposed to high levels of mercury during the boiler demolitions. Further, OSHA said the employer had not taken steps to reduce those exposure to below permissible levels. The inspection also revealed that the company had not evaluated the respirator program’s effectiveness in protecting workers against exposures and did not consult with the employees to identify and correct any respirator problems.

OSHA cited the company for two willful and six serious violations concerning mercury, respirators, protective clothing, and sanitary conditions.

Exposure to mercury can cause permanent damage to the nervous system and kidneys.

The company has 15 business days from the time it receives the citations and penalties to contest them.

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