Prompted By Severe Workplace Injury, OSHA Investigation At Georgia Nursery Reveals Deadly Workplace Hazards; Nearly $47K In Fines Proposed
Evergreen Nursery in Statham, Georgia cited for 18 serious safety violations after overturned forklift crushes worker’s pelvis.
OSHA began an investigation after learning an Evergreen Nursery employee suffered a workplace injury that required hospitalization. On March 18, 2016, a forklift driven by a 36-year-old worker on uneven terrain turned over, crushing the operator’s pelvis. The severe injury hospitalized the worker. In its investigation, OSHA inspectors determined the worker was not wearing a seatbelt. The agency has established a Regional Emphasis Program to reduce injuries and fatalities related to powered industrial trucks.
The following serious citations relate to the employer:
- Not ensuring workers operating powered industrial trucks wore seat belts.
- Exposing workers to electrical hazards from improperly repaired electrical cords.
- Not providing protective equipment to workers.
- Not developing a written hazard communication program for workers handling chemicals.
- Not providing written energy control procedures to prevent machinery from starting during maintenance and servicing.
- Exposing workers to unguarded machine parts and equipment.
- Exposing workers to falls due to missing safety rails.
- Proposed penalties: $46,900
“Evergreen Nursery is exposing workers to numerous serious safety hazards and needs to be more proactive with assessing the workplace for hazards and taking action to correct them,” said William Fulcher, OSHA’s area director in the Atlanta-East Office. This incident could have been prevented if management had followed OSHA standards.”
The citations can be viewed at: https://www.dol.gov/sites/default/files/newsroom/newsreleases/OSHA20160996.pdf
Evergreen Nursery is a wholesale nursery that specializes in perennial and ground covers. The company operates a facility near Athens, Georgia and employs approximately 40 workers. The employer has 15 business days from receipt of its citations and proposed penalties to comply, request a conference with OSHA’s area director or contest the findings before the independent Occupational Safety and Health Review Commission.
Georgia’s workers continue to be exposed to a myriad of unsafe work conditions. If you, or a loved one, has suffered a serious on-the-job injury, we can help! Contact our office today at 770-984-8900 to schedule a free private consultation.