The head of a Boston-based construction company that lost two workers in a fatal accident at a downtown Boston worksite last year now faces nearly $2 million in total fines after safety violations on a new project.
Federal regulators hit Laurence Moloney, operating under the name Atlantic Coast Utilities LLC/Advanced Utilities Inc., and Nuala Nichoncubhair, doing business as Sterling Excavation LLC, with proposed penalties of $624,777 for seven different safety violations.
The Occupational Safety and Health Administration cited Moloney and his companies for four “willful” and three “serious” safety violations for exposing workers to cave-in and other “potentially life-threatening” excavation hazards involving foundation work on an East Boston construction site.
Moloney’s attorney did not immediately return ENR’s call and email.
The latest fines come six months after OSHA announced $1.3 million in penalties against Moloney and Atlantic Coast Utilities LLC/Advanced Utilities Inc. of Boston and its successor companies, including Sterling Excavation LLC, for the double-fatality last February at a downtown worksite.
Two Atlantic Coast Utilities workers, Castaneda Romero, 27, and Figueroa Gutierrez, 33, who were killed on a company worksite on Feb. 24, 2021 on High Street in Boston’s Financial District. A Ford F750 dump truck at the worksite struck the two men, knocking them into a nine-foot trench.
OSHA cited Moloney and Atlantic Coast for 28 different violations related to the fatal accident, which Moloney and the company are now contesting.
In addition, Atlantic Coast Utilities, Moloney and Konstantinos Kollias, an employee of the firm, also face perjury charges after being indicted by a Suffolk County grand jury in November for allegedly lying on workplace safety forms contractors are required to file with Boston officials in order to obtain permits.
In a Feb. 14 press release announcing the new fines for the alleged violations on the East Boston worksite, federal safety regulators called Moloney a “serial violator” with “an extensive history of OSHA trenching and excavation violations dating back almost 20 years.”
OSHA Regional Administrator Galen Blanton, in a statement, said, “Less than six months after being cited for egregious willful violations in the deaths of two employees in an excavation, this serial violator again exposed employees to potentially fatal cave-in and struck-by hazards.”
In the latest incident in East Boston, OSHA inspectors, responding to a complaint, found that Moloney and his companies failed to ensure protection agains excavation cave-ins, conduct inspections, train employees, stabilize adjoining structures and provide protective helmets to employees.