Two Contractors have been found responsible of failing to establish the location of underground utilities prior to beginning excavation work on the Sun Prairie explosion and fire back in July.
The investigation was conduced by the U.S. Department of Labor’s Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA).
The Utility Contractors were Bear Communications LLC of Lawrence, Kansas, and subcontractor V C Tech Inc. of Ypsilanti, Michigan.
The explosion and fire occurred back in July 2018 when an underground gas line was struck by excavation equipment, taking the life of a volunteer firefighter.
OSHA inspectors determined that neither contractor took the measure of calling the underground utility owners or the local one-call system.
Madison Office Area Director Chad Greenwood said the proper protocol wasn’t followed:
“Excavators are required to train their employees on procedures for determining the location of underground utilities, and contact the utility company before opening an excavation”
Both companies were issued a serious safety violation, and face penalties of $12,934 each-the maximum penalty allowed.
They both have 15 business days from receipt of the citations and penalties to comply, or request a conference with OSHA’s area director.