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Reclamation addresses dam safety at 2,078-MW Hoover

Hoover Dam

Deficiencies identified in a recent U.S. Department of Labor Occupational Safety and Health Administration inspection of Hoover Dam are causing the Department of Reclamation to take "aggressive steps" in addressing them, HydroWorld.com has learned.

Deficiencies identified in a recent U.S. Department of Labor Occupational Safety and Health Administration inspection of Hoover Dam are causing the Department of Reclamation to take "aggressive steps" in addressing them, HydroWorld.com has learned.

However, items identified by OSHA at the 2,078-MW hydropower project do not jeopardize the safety of the general public or threaten the structural integrity of the dam or dam operations, Reclamation said.

Amongst OSHA's findings were a drill press not mounted to a bench, equipment without necessary guards and a lack of proper labels on electrical panels -- all of which have been corrected, Reclamation said. Another issue regards the dam's doors, which were originally constructed built to open inward instead of outward as is now required.

"Although one violation is one too many, we are taking the necessary steps to ensure the issues raised are fixed and do not happen again," Reclamation Lower Colorado Regional Director Terry Fulp said.

Reclamation said that it will share the findings of this OSHA inspection with its other offices to ensure similar problems and violations don't also exist at other facilities.

"A comprehensive and well-supported occupational safety and health program is important to a strong and productive workforce," said Reclamation Commissioner Michael L. Connor. "Reclamation will do what is necessary to ensure that safety continues to come first at its offices and facilities."

HydroWorld.com reported in October that President Barack Obama had taken a break from his campaign preparations to view the historic structure.

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