As part of its ongoing campaign to prevent falls in construction, the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) has issued a fine of $68,200 and a strongly worded statement on the actions of Proframing Contractors of Pickerington, Ohio. According to the agency, Proframing Contractors has received 10 citations over the past eight years for allowing employees to work without fall protection and has refused to pay many of the resulting penalties.
The latest infraction was observed during an inspection in late October in nearby Gahanna. Three workers were observed installing roof framing and sheathing on a commercial building at heights up to 20 feet with no guardrails, personal fall arrest systems or safety nets. OSHA cited the company for one repeat, two serious and two willful safety violations.
"Proframing Contractors has shown repeatedly that it does not value the safety of its employees," said Deborah Zubaty, OSHA's area director for Columbus, Ohio. "There is no excuse when it comes to providing the necessary equipment to keep workers safe. Falls are a leading cause of death in the construction industry, and many fatalities occur when a worker falls from a height of 10 feet or less."
OSHA identified other violations at the same site, including using a nail gun without eye protection, employing a damaged industrial vehicle to move materials and failing to train employees on fall hazards and prevention.
All contractors should ensure that their workers have the necessary knowledge to identify and neutralize any threats to their safety. Behavior based safety programs are designed to teach construction workers and supervisors the best practices that will guarantee their well-being.