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May 17, 2024
Missouri roofer facing $258K OSHA fine

Missouri roofing contractor 13 Construction & Pro Services LLC faces $258,063 in Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) fines for illegally exposing roofing workers to the dangers of fall hazards—5 times in 7 weeks at 6 Wentzville, Missouri, residential building sites, the agency announced May 7.

OSHA inspectors opened investigations after observing 13 Construction & Pro Services allowing its employees to work on roofs without required fall protection equipment at separate sites on October 31, November 2, and December 14, 2023.

The agency specifically alleges that the company allowed employees to work without protection at heights greater than 6 feet, didn’t have a competent person inspect and evaluate jobsite hazards daily, and failed to train workers to recognize hazards or prevent falls. Inspectors also found that 13 Construction & Pro Services permitted the unsafe use of ladders, didn’t ensure workers wore head protection, and didn’t require the use of eye and face protective equipment when workers used pneumatic nail guns.

OSHA last year revealed that the agency’s construction industry fall protection standard (29 Code of Federal Regulations (CFR) §1926.501) was its most frequently cited standard for the 13th straight year. The agency cited 7,271 violations in fiscal year (FY) 2023. The ladders standard (§1926.1053) was the third most cited standard, cited 2,978 times in FY 2023, and the eye and face protection standard (§1926.102) was the ninth most cited, cited 2,074 times in FY 2023.

“Far too often, we find that after OSHA has opened an investigation at one worksite, the same contractor will do nothing to correct similar hazards at its other sites or bother to train and make sure its work crews follow federal safety procedures,” Bill McDonald, OSHA’s St. Louis area office director, said in an agency statement.

OSHA settles citations with New Jersey builders

OSHA also announced on May 7 a stipulated agreement with two related North Jersey construction companies, Primetime Construction LLC and its subsidiary, Primetime Contractors LLC, of Paterson, to settle violations cited at five Paterson construction worksites in 2021.

The agency initially cited Primetime Contractors LLC for four willful violations that occurred in September 2021. Agency inspectors found the employer exposing workers to fall hazards by repeatedly failing to ensure construction site stairways at company worksites had handrails and stair rails, even after the agency counseled the employer about the relevant safety requirements.

Primetime Contractors contested the citations and penalties to the Occupational Safety and Health Review Commission. The Labor Department amended the citations to add Primetime Construction to the case during litigation.

The employers agreed to pay $215,000 in penalties and implement significant safety measures to resolve the citations.

Under the agreement, the employers must implement the following enhanced abatement measures:

  • Conduct a pre-job hazard assessment for each job.
  • Ensure field employees receive at least 10-hour OSHA training.
  • Ensure supervisors receive at least 30-hour OSHA training. 
  • Require subcontractors to document, with photographs, that compliant handrails and stair rails are in place. 
  • Retain a safety consultant to conduct periodic worksite audits. 
  • Notify OSHA of the companies’ upcoming projects.

“This agreement commits Primetime Construction LLC and Primetime Contractors LLC to correct their previously cited hazards and invest in significant and measurable practices and improvements designed to prevent falls, the deadliest hazard in construction work, and result in safer workplaces for their employees,” Lisa Levy, OSHA’s Hasbrouck Heights, New Jersey, area office director, said in a statement.

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