Updated April 21st, 2022 at 11:35 IST

Production company behind 'Rust' heavily fined for firearms safety failure; Details inside

The production company behind Alec Baldwin's movie Rust were heavily fined for safety failures on set that lead to the death of cinematographer Halyna Hutchins.

Nehal Gautam
Rust movie fine
Image: AP | Image:self

It has been nearly six months since the fatal shooting incident took place on the sets of the film Rust. The shooting incident that involved actor Alec Baldwin, claimed the life of cinematographer Halyna Hutchins.

Now, almost six months later, it was recently revealed that Rust Movie Productions LLC was issued the maximum possible fine for "plain indifference to the recognized hazards associated with the use of firearms on set that resulted in a fatality, severe injury and unsafe working conditions."

Rust Movie Productions fined over $135,000 for safety failure on set

According to a People report, a Wednesday press release from the New Mexico Environment Department's Occupational Health and Safety Bureau (OHSB) addressed the Rust shooting incident and claimed that Rust Movie Productions knew that firearm safety procedures were not being followed on set and demonstrated plain indifference to employee safety by failing to review work practices and take corrective action. It further mentioned that they were issuing the highest level of citation and maximum fine allowable by state law in New Mexico": a "Willful-Serious citation" along with a civil penalty of $136,793 while adding how the production company failed to follow the guidelines or take effective measures to protect their team. 

As the incident included Alec Baldwin firing a prop gun that accidentally killed Halyna Hutchins, OHSB  stated that it was "an avoidable loss of life occurred." It further stated, "While the film industry has clear national guidelines for firearms safety, Rust Movie Productions LLC failed to follow these guidelines or take other effective measures to protect workers."

Moreover, Environment Cabinet Secretary James Kenney stated in the press release that the investigation "found that this tragic incident never would have happened if Rust Movie Productions LLC had followed national film industry standards for firearm safety" while adding that it was a complete failure of the employer to follow recognised national protocols that keep employees safe. 

In response to OSHO's investigation, Stefan Friedman, a spokesperson for Rust Movie Productions LLC, said in a statement to Reuters, "While we appreciate OSHA's time and effort in its investigation, we disagree with its findings and plan to appeal."

Further, even Rust script supervisor Mamie Mitchell's attorney, Gloria Allred issued a statement to the outlet in which she stated that everyone responsible for what happened on that production which led to the tragedy should hang their heads in shame and added that as a producer, Alec Baldwin was part of Rust management.

"The report by OSHA is a stinging indictment which goes way beyond mere negligence. In issuing its penalty it finds that the violations were willful. There are no stronger words which New Mexico OSHA could have used to describe the production company's failures," she was quoted as saying. 

(Image: AP)


Published April 21st, 2022 at 11:35 IST

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