- The Occupational Health and Safety Administration cited five contractors for fall protection safety violations at a three-building apartment complex in Lincoln, NE, and fined them a total of $115,200, the agency said in a press release.
- All five contractors face a range of willful and serious violations for allowing employees to work at heights of five stories without protection, as well as other safety and fall hazards like failure to provide provide adequate railings and personal protective equipment.
- The companies OSHA said were in violation of safety rules include: East Framing Inc. ($65,450), South Georgia Frames ($33,000), America's Best Siding ($9,100), Aspen Heights (4,500) and ProCon Construction Services LLC ($3,150).
Jeff Funke, OSHA’s area director in Omaha, said in a press release, "Controlling contractors and subcontractors have a responsibility to protect workers on (their) construction sites from falls, which cause four out of 10 workplace fatalities in the construction industry."
Fall protection violations top OSHA's list of the most common safety violations. In fact, a recent Engineering News-Record report found that OSHA added more than 500 companies to its Severe Violators Enforcement Program between 2010 and mid-April 2016, with 60% of those companies related to the construction industry. OSHA fines will increase an estimated 80% in August of this year when the agency raises its fine levels for the first time since 1990.
The legal system is also cracking down on construction safety violators. A Brooklyn, NY, contractor and his companies were recently charged with manslaughter and homicide in connection with an April 2015 worker death. One of contractor Salvatore Schirripa's employees fell six stories because Schirripa allegedly did not provide any fall protection for the worker, who was walking backwards finishing concrete in an unprotected are of the building when he fell off the edge.