South Florida contractors found to have put roofing workers’ safety at risk

October 16, 2023

(United States)
For roofing workers without required fall protection, one wrong or unsteady step can lead to serious, debilitating injuries or worse, a danger to which two Florida contractors exposed 12 workers at a Davie worksite in April 2023.

Inspectors with the U.S. Department of Labor’s Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) observed employees of A1A Roofing Contractor LLC of Loxahatchee working without fall protection on pitched roofs at heights up to 32 feet. They also found the subcontractor allowed one worker to use a broken harness and failed to train employees on how to recognize and prevent falls. OSHA cited the company for similar violations in September 2022.

During the investigation, OSHA also learned the primary contractor, Paul Bange Roofing Inc. of Davie, had not conducted regular inspections as required to prevent A1A workers from being exposed to fall hazards.

OSHA issued a citation to A1A Roofing for two willful violations, one repeat violation and three serious violations and proposed $163,044 in penalties. The agency issued Paul Bange Roofing a serious citation and proposed $10,938 in penalties.

OSHA Area Office Director Condell Eastmond in Fort Lauderdale, Florida said: “Our inspectors found the primary contractor and subcontractor at a Davie work site failing to protect workers from the risks of falls from elevation, the construction industry’s leading cause of death. Fall dangers are widely known in the roofing industry as are the protections that employers must legally use to prevent them, so neither A1A Roofing nor Paul Bange Roofing have a valid excuse for putting their workers in jeopardy of serious or fatal injuries.”

The Bureau of Labor Statistics reports nearly one in five workplace deaths occurred in the construction industry in 2021, and just over one-third of these related to falls, slips and trips. The industry accounted for about 46% of all fatal falls, slips and trips in 2021.

The companies have 15 business days from receipt of their citations and 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.

This is valid as of 16th October 2023.

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