June 16, 2019

OSHA investigating scaffold handling in work at Capitol

AUGUSTA — Failure of a worker to use proper safety equipment while he reportedly stood on a railing on the State House dome Wednesday triggered an investigation by federal workplace safety regulators.

An Occupational Safety and Health Administration inspector visited the site after several people reported the incident to the Augusta OSHA office, said Roger Banaitis, assistant area director of safety for the agency.

The incident involved an employee of the Boston-based Marr Scaffold, which is providing staging for renovations at the top of the State House. An employee reportedly stood on a railing at the base of the dome without wearing equipment to prevent a fall.

Banaitis said a fine could be imposed after an investigation, which he said would last up to two weeks. A company has a right to contest fines.

Marr’s safety director, contacted in Massachusetts, said he did not know the details of the incident.

“We stress safety very highly with our people. We will have to look at the situation very carefully,” said Marr’s Steve Boorhis.

Banaitis noted that OSHA officials could see activity on the State House from their Augusta office.

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