JACKSONVILLE, Fla. -- Local inspectors with the Occupational Safety and Health Administration were on site Wednesday after a massive fire caused significant damage to a construction project near the St. Johns Town Center. Action News has learned, this isn't the first time safety inspectors investigated the construction site.
Bove Company, based in Jacksonville Beach, is the general contractor for the multimillion-dollar development of luxury apartments, 5000 Town at 5000 Big Island Drive.
Action News uncovered documents from OSHA that detail an August inspection that resulted in multiple citations for sub-contractors on the job.
The man in charge of construction at the six-story, 130-unit, upscale apartment complex is talking to Action News.
When Action News reporter Ryan Smith asked project developer, Gabe Bove, about OSHA's visit, he said "Totally unrelated. It's with some other sub-contractors involved in the construction."
OSHA didn't cite Bove's company, but two sub-contractors owe OSHA thousands in fines from that August visit.
"So the workers that are exposed to the hazards are employees of the sub-contractors," said Jeff Romeo, assistant area director with OSHA. "We can only issue citations to those employers who have employees exposed to those hazards and conditions."
OSHA issued two serious violations to J.A. Croson for fall hazards. It now owes the federal agency $5,000.
RCP Services incurred nine violations -- eight of them considered serious. The company now has to fork over $47,000 for welding cable and fire extinguisher issues.
OSHA told Action News that these previous citations played no role in Tuesday's massive fire.The agency says it will conduct a thorough investigation following the fire and could take up to six months to complete.
"If there were any issues identified that were violations of our rules and regulations then we would issue citations to whatever parties would be responsible or exposed to," said Romeo.
Meantime, the project's developer says he was pleased with JFRD's response and is hopeful the work can get done in time for the apartment's June opening.
"I'm happy that we're here and more importantly that no one was hurt or injured," said Bove.