Britton Bridge LLC, the Mt. Juliet, Tenn., company with two fatalities on a Knoxville bridge project this year, has been fined $7,150 for a pair of violations related to the second death.
The Tennessee Occupational Safety and Health Administration cited the company for exposing employees to hazards from falling objects when working on a barge during bridge demolition and for not warning them about hazards from the swing radius of the 300-ton and 150-ton Link Belt cranes mounted on barges below the bridge.
Solin Estrada-Jimenez, 49, was killed on May 24 after being hit in the head by a piece of concrete debris that fell about 60 ft to the barge where he was working.
“The company maintains a safety program manual but does not address the issue of overhead falling-debris hazards,” the TOSHA report said.
The owner received the citation on Oct. 4; it was made public on Oct. 5.
TOSHA inspectors found several safety issues. Britton had hired a site safety director about two weeks before the incident. Since then, it has hired Fortier Loss Control Consultants Inc. to conduct additional training—in English and Spanish—and follow the corrective action suggested in the report, said Britton spokesman John Van Mol.
Estrada-Jimenez had been known to the company as Rudolfo Bustillos because he used false identification during hiring. The contractor now uses E-Verify to check job applicants.
Britton officials are reviewing the TOSHA citation and have not determined if they will contest the latest fine, Van Mol said. The company was fined $16,750 for safety violations related to the Jan. 25 death of a project foreman who was hit in the head by a hydraulic excavator's bucket. It is contesting the fine, but a hearing date has not yet been set.
The $24.7-million job, which began on Jan. 3, involves demolishing and reconstructing the Henley Street Bridge, built across the Tennessee River in 1932.
Classified as structurally deficient, the 1,793-ft bridge will keep its main arches and piers but get a new deck, sidewalks, railings, girders, floor beams, spandrel columns to the top of the existing concrete arches, upper parts of abutments and piers, wing walls and roadway approach slabs.
Although the contract sets a completion date in June 2013, the contractor can earn a bonus of $1 million for completing work by Dec. 31, 2012, according to the Tennessee Dept. of Transportation.