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Category Archives: Violations & Citations

Fall Protection Violations & Citations Blog Category for all articles relevant to fall protection violations and citations.  Learn more by visiting our website.

Manslaughter Charges After Worker Falls

The owner of a home improvement contracting company plead not guilty to manslaughter charges this week in Portland, Oregon. The indictment came in April after Alan Loignon, 30, fell from a 3rd story roof on December 13th that resulted in his death.

Shawn Purvis

Shawn Purvis, was charged with one count of manslaughter and one count of workplace manslaughter because Loignon was not wearing a safety harness while working on the roof.

If Purvis is convicted, he will face up to 30 years in prison and a $50,000 fine. The conditions of his bail include providing a list of active job sites and upcoming job sites to ensure current and future worker safety.

As mandated by OSHA, employers are required to provide proper safety equipment and training to prevent worker falls when working at heights.

“Every single day, I show up at the job site … and I tell them, please, be safe, everything you need is here,” Purvis said in previous interview. “I can’t sit there 24/7 and watch subcontractors. It’s either they’re going to wear (the safety gear) or they …
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Highway Contractor Fall Protection

As safety culture continues to grow, there is an increasing demand for fall protection across all labor industries. For example, highway contractor fall protection is needed for asphalt mixing plants.

OSHA has cited Nelcon Inc., of Kalispell, Montana for 26 serious citations and two other violations. The proposed fines are $225,425 after an investigation into an accident in April. Two employees were burned in the accident, and one employee fell while pouring cooler oil into a hot oil tank. The worker that fell sustained injuries after a 15 foot fall and required hospitalization.

The OSHA fines were for failing to use fall protection systems and guard machinery; not providing sufficient personal protective equipment; failing to control hazardous energy; and not reporting a work-related incident leading to hospitalization within 24 hours. 

Improper Fall Protection Proves Costly

When considering the cost of a fall, it is easy to focus only on OSHA penalties and fines. However, improper fall protection proves costly when you factor in lost wages, medical bills, and lawsuits. A recent fall at work was just settled with an employer for $7.8 million.

Raymond DeMarco, fell 10 feet from a platform on a construction site in Philadelphia. He was sandblasting and painting a bridge on November 16th, 2015. A faulting railing on a scaffold is to blame for the fall that caused spinal injuries as well as pneumonia that was contracted while in the hospital.

Loftus Construction, the defendant in the lawsuit allegedly violated OSHA standards by not ensuring safe working conditions. According to Larry Bendesky, the counsel for the plaintiff, “this was a completely preventable accident where the general contractor violated OSHA standards and their own safety policies, resulting in a devastating accident that will have a lifetime impact on a decent, hardworking man.”

Homemade Fall Protection Is Unsafe

Two men worked on a roof without taking the proper safety precautions and utilizing homemade fall protection. There was a photograph of Martin from Milton of Campsie and an employee working on the roof that was reported to the Glasgow Sheriff Court.

Martin had slid down a sloping roof to work at the roofs edge, while the employee held onto a piece of webbing strap that was attached to a rope which was connected to a harness worn by Mr. Martin. Neither employee was properly anchored for fall protection coverage. Furthermore, Martin was also observed throwing supplies up to the employee which created an additional drop hazard below the roof. Homemade fall protection is never a safe solution for working at heights.

Upon further investigation it was found that Inex Works had failed to ensure that the subcontractor had properly planned a safe system for working at height as well as using appropriate roof equipment. The fact that Martin wore a harness that was being held by an employee exposed them both to a risk of fall, injury, and even …
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Fall Protection OSHA Citation

The U.S. Department of Labor has issued a fall protection OSHA citation to Aspen Contracting, for a serious violation on a Fountain, Colorado job site.  The infraction was against 29CFR 1926.20(b)(2).

According to OSHA, Aspen Contracting Inc., as a controlling employer is failing to conduct frequent and regular inspections of its jobsites, materials, and equipment by a competent person where its subcontractors are performing work.  The violation was observed on July 18, 2018 when a subcontractor (J Cuellar, LLC) were performing roof work without fall protection.  Aspen Contracting failed to ensure that frequent and regular inspections took place at this jobsite.

The serious fall protection OSHA citation was accompanied by a fine of $12,195.  Aspen Contracting has until January 10th 2019 to abate the violation.  Abatement requires corrective action and documentation that frequent and regular inspections are being conducted by a competent person at job sites to ensure subcontracted employees are not exposed to hazardous conditions and fall hazards.

OSHA Regional Emphasis Program

In Seattle, an OSHA Regional Emphasis Program has been launched.  The purpose of the REP program is to address fall hazards in the Pacific Northwest, specifically within the construction industry.

The states covered by this new program are Alaska, Idaho, Oregon, and Washington.  The new program will go into effect after a period of outreach and education.  According to OSHA the enforcement activities will include “onsite inspections and evaluations of construction operations, working conditions, record keeping, and safety and health programs to ensure compliance.”

“Falls are the leading cause of fatalities in the construction industry,” Barbara Goto, Region 10 acting administrator and Region 9 administrator, said in the release. “This emphasis program is designed to reinforce the requirement to use fall protection systems to protect workers from serious and fatal injuries.”

To learn more about fall protection products and services offered by FPS contact us at 888-596-5367.

Maximum OSHA Penalty Proposed

The U.S. Department of Labor’s Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) has cited Kasper Roofing & Construction Inc. for exposing employees to fall and other hazards after an employee suffered fatal injuries at a Maitland, Florida, worksite. The Orlando, Florida-based roofing contractor faces $134,510 in penalties, the maximum OSHA penalty allowed by law.

OSHA inspectors determined that the employee was performing residential roofing activities without fall protection when he fell. OSHA also cited the company for failing to provide fall protection training to employees and conduct frequent inspections to ensure employees were utilizing fall protection.

“Workers can be protected from falls by the use of harnesses and other fall protection devices,” said OSHA Tampa Area Office Director Les Grove. “This tragedy could have been prevented if the employer had complied with OSHA’s fall protection standards.”

The company has 15 business days from receipt of the citations and proposed penalties to comply, request an informal conference with OSHA’s area director, or contest the findings before the independent Occupational Safety and Health Review Commission.

Under the Occupational Safety and Health Act of 1970, employers …
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Lacking Skylight Fall Protection Causes Injury

In Sandusky, Ohio Cedar Point LP’s lacking skylight fall protection resulted in a serious injury fall and significant OSHA fine.  Upon investigation, OSHA inspectors determined that the employee fell through an unprotected skylight during a three person operation to remove insulating blankets and roof covers.

The proposed fines equal $142,270 for one willful and one serious violation.  “Falls like this are preventable if employers provide required fall protection systems when employees work at elevated heights, or near floor and wall openings,” said OSHA Toledo Area Office Director Kimberly Nelson.

A press release was issued by Cedar Point stating the following, “safety for all associates and guests is Cedar Point’s number one priority. Cedar Point is committed to following all recommended guidelines and procedures as set forth by OSHA. The park has just recently received communication from OSHA and the documents are under review.”

There were no specifics given as to the injuries or the date of the accident.

Skylight Fall Protection

Skylights can easily be covered or guarded to prevent this type of accident and injury. Product options include protective barrier guardrail, …
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Recycling Plant Receives OSHA Citation

An Alabama recycling plant receives OSHA citation after a worker is hospitalized following a 30 foot fall.  Thorpe Plant Services, Inc. and Steel Dust Recycling faces $175, 528 and $28, 270 respectively in proposed penalties for fall and confined space hazards.

According to the OSHA press release they cited Thorpe the maximum allowable penalty for exposing employees to fall hazards. The Agency also cited the company for failing to conduct atmospheric monitoring before allowing employees to enter a confined space; failing to develop a permit prior to employees entering a confined space; and to ensure emergency services were provided when employees entered a permit-required confined space. OSHA cited Steel Dust for exposing employees to fall hazards, failing to implement their permit space entry program, and not advising Thorpe that the required work involved a permit space entry.

“Both companies’ failure to comply with fall prevention requirements led to a serious injury that could have been prevented,” said OSHA Birmingham Area Office Director Ramona Morris.

The companies have 15 business days from receipt of the citations and proposed penalties to comply, request an …
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Fatal Fall Causes OSHA Citation

In Colorado a fatal fall causes OHSA citation for two construction companies.  The fall took place on a jobsite in Greenwood Village in March of 2018.  The penalties associated with the citations for the two firms are proposed at $177,893.

The Occupational Safety and Health Administration found that Hammers Construction and Montes Construction did not provide proper fall protection and further more did not prevent employees from standing on the mid rails of scissor lifts.  During the installation of metal roof panels while on the scissor lift the employee fell.  Hammers proposed fine totals $97,002 while Montes proposed will be near $81,000.

This is following two fall related willful citations in January of 2018 for Montes Construction with fines totaling $6,652 which was negotiated to a reduced fine of $3,992.  Hamers construction had received a fall related complaint in September of 2016 but was not cited by OSHA.