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Spider-Man Musical Cited by U.S. for ‘Serious’ Safety Violations

Bono, Julie Taymor, Glen Berger and The Edge in New York. Taymor, who directs, also co-wrote the book for "Spider-Man Turn Off the Dark" with Berger. Photographer: Joan Marcus/O & M Co. via Bloomberg

March 4 (Bloomberg) -- Producers of “Spider-Man: Turn Off the Dark” were cited by U.S. regulators for workplace safety violations after injuries to actors in the Broadway show.

The Occupational Safety and Health Administration today proposed fining producers of the $65 million show $12,600 for “serious” violations.

“Employees were exposed to the hazards of falls or being struck during flying routines because of improperly adjusted or unsecured safety harnesses,” the agency said today in an e-mailed statement.

At least four performers have been injured working on the show, one of whom quit the production after suffering a concussion. On the evening of Dec. 20 an aerialist fell at least 20 feet from a platform after a harness wasn’t properly attached.

“‘Spider-Man: Turn Off the Dark’’ remains in compliance with all government agencies and continues to adhere to all safety protocols,” Rick Miramontez, a spokesman for the production, said today in an e-mailed statement.

The show has been in previews since Nov. 28. Its official opening has been delayed five times. Miramontez said in an interview that the latest scheduled opening night, March 15, stands for now.

Federal investigators went to the Foxwoods Theater in Manhattan to investigate injuries during the show, which has scenes of actors flying over the audience. The producer, 8 Legged Productions LLC, failed to protect employees from being struck by overhead rigging, according to OSHA.

A risk of falls also was created by “open-sided floors” that lacked fall protection, the agency said.

The producers have 15 business days from receipt of OSHA’s citations to contest the findings. The violations were all categorized as serious, which means there is a substantial probability of death or serious injuries which an employer knew about or should have known.

To contact the reporters on this story: Philip Boroff in New York at pboroff@bloomberg.net; Stephanie Armour in Washington at sarmour@bloomberg.net

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Larry Liebert at lliebert@bloomberg.net

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