A roofing contractor from Tuscola, Illinois was cited for multiple fall safety violations at two residential work sites.
A compliance officer working with the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) saw four employees working without adequate fall protection during an inspection on June 9. Inspectors also witnessed six more employees being exposed to similar hazards at another residential site on June 27.
In both cases, the men were working at heights of at least 9 feet. OSHA requires fall protection for every employee working at a height of 6 feet or greater.
OSHA had already cited this contractor twice for similar violations in March 2014. Since he had been warned, OSHA categorized the current hazards as “willful violations,” which are committed with voluntary disregard for the law's requirement or with indifference to employee safety.
The contractor received two willful violations for each infraction, both for failing to provide fall protection and failing to develop an accident prevention program at the work sites. The proposed penalties totaled $48,400.
Falls are the leading cause of death in the construction industry. From as low as 6 feet, falls can cause broken bones, lacerations, brain injury and paralysis.
Does My Boss Have to Provide Safety Equipment?
Failure to provide fall protection is one of the OSHA’s most frequently cited safety violations, but many companies still refuse to provide it. Safety nets, warning-line systems or personal fall arrest systems can prevent injuries and save lives, so employers are required to provide it.
If your employer is forcing you to work without the proper safety equipment, your rights are being violated. For more information about your legal options, follow Larrimer & Larrimer on Facebook
Larrimer & Larrimer, LLC—Columbus Workers Comp Attorneys