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OSHA Enforcing Fall Safety Regulations, Fines NJ Workplace 436K

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OSHA is cracking down on companies that do not adequately safeguard employees from falls (via

July 2, 2012 — This week, the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) issued 25  citations against four contractors for failing to uphold safety regulations at a work site in Jersey City, NJ. Altura Concrete, Inc., Nathil Corp., Blade Contracting Inc., and White Diamond Properties LLC accrued numerous violations including protecting employees from fall hazards, improper use of scaffolds, failure to eliminate hazardous conditions, and providing protective equipment for eyes and head.  If found liable, the companies would be required to pay upwards of $436,000.

The co-contractors allegedly failed to protect the edges of the 20-story building, placing the 75 workers at risk of falling off the roof and scaffolding. OSHA defines willful violations as intentional or voluntary disregard for the law and indifference to worker safety. Serious violations like these put workers at risk of serious harm or death when an employer could have prevented it.

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Giving employees the equipment, training, and knowledge needed to protect themselves is all included in OSHA’s regulations (via

“Year after year, falls remain the leading cause of death in the construction industry, accounting for almost one in every three construction worker deaths,” Assistant Secretary of Labor for Occupational Safety and Health Dr. David Michaels says. “OSHA’s message is simple: Safety pays and falls cost.”  Accordingly, the regulatory body implements many campaigns aimed at raising awareness for fall safety and these citations and fines help to emphasize the importance of protecting each employee on a site.

OSHA outlines strict guidelines enforcing fall and safety hazards.The employer is responsible for providing a fall protection system and must comply with all other fall-requirements prior to having employees on site. Especially at high stories, fall arrest systems should be in place. In construction, fall protection must be provided at 6 feet.

– K. Howitt

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