OSHA cites Pewaukee water technology facility after worker fell into water test pit

PEWAUKEE (CBS 58) --- The U.S. Department of Labor's occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) cited Xylem Inc., a water technology company in Pewaukee, after a worker suffered an injury in October.

Officials say a guardrail loosened and the worker fell and struck his head on a support beam as he lowered himself into a nearly 30-foot deep water test pit. 

OSHA received the report of injury on Oct. 29, 2020. 

“This worker’s injury could have been prevented if appropriate fall protection was provided,” said OSHA Area Director Christine Zortman in Milwaukee. “OSHA has regulations for protecting workers who enter confined spaces, including having rescue equipment available and attendants ready to ensure their co-workers’ safety and to call for rescue services if necessary.”

OSHA proposed penalties of $234,054 for one willful and eight serious safety violations.

According to a news release, inspectors determined the company exposed employees to walk-working surfaces hazards, failed to provide employees with fall protection before they entered a 100 by 24-foot water-testing pit and failed to follow specific permit-required confined spaces safety procedures prior to entering the water test pits.

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