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Roofer Fined $59K in OSHA Fall Push

Monday, February 3, 2014

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Federal safety authorities have proposed $59,290 in fines against a Florida roofing company amid a regional crackdown on falls in construction.

The Occupational Safety and Health Administration has cited The Roof Authority Inc., of Fort Pierce, with one willful and one serious safety violation after an Aug. 4, 2013, inspection at a job site in Pompano Beach.

The Roofing Authority

The Roofing Authority, based in Fort Pierce, FL, serves residential, industrial and commercial customers throughout the Treasure Coast.

Founded in 1993, the company performs residential, industrial, commercial and condominium roofing services throughout Florida’s Treasure Coast.

A spokeswoman for the company acknowledged receipt of the citations and said the company took safety seriously.

"[W]e provide our employees and customers with a safe working environment [...]. We believe the citations, classifications and penalties to be improper and are currently evaluating our options," said Loretta Long.

Immediate Action Needed

In an announcement Tuesday (Jan. 28), OSHA said it had conducted the inspection as part of the agency's regional emphasis program for falls in construction.

Falls are the leading cause of death in the construction industry.

"The Roof Authority continues to disregard the safety of its workers by not addressing known hazards," said Condell Eastmond, OSHA's area director in Fort Lauderdale. "Management must take immediate action to correct these deficiencies."

Citations Issued

According to the case documents, the willful citation, carrying a $53,900 fine, involves exposing workers to a fall hazards.

OSHA says workers engaging in roofing activities on low-slope roofs, with unprotected sides and edges six feet or more above lower levels, were not protected from falling by guardrail systems, safety net systems or personal fall arrest systems.

Roof safety

Falls are the leading cause of death in the construction industry, OSHA says.

A willful violation, OSHA’s highest level of infraction, is one committed with intentional, knowing or voluntary disregard for the law's requirements, or with plain indifference to worker safety and health.

The serious violation, carrying a fine of $5,390, alleges that the employer exposed workers to a struck-by hazard.

According to OSHA, workers were close to a crane operating with an outrigger pad that had sunken into the ground due to insufficient support materials.

A serious violation occurs when there is substantial probability that death or serious physical harm could result from a hazard about which the employer knew or should have known.

The company has 15 business days to contest the citations.

Previous Citations

The company has a history of safety issues, according to a review of OSHA’s records.

The Roofing Authority was cited in July 2011 for two serious, one repeat, and one other-than-serious safety hazard involving fall protection, training requirements and head protection.

The company was initially fined $11,400 but informally settled the violations, and the fines were dropped to $6,180.

In February 2010, the roofing contractor was fined $300 for serious hea- protection hazards. That case is closed.


Tagged categories: Citations; Fall protection; Hazards; Health and safety; OSHA; Regulations; Roofing contractors

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