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Contractor Gets 11th OSHA Case

Tuesday, March 24, 2015

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A nationwide roofing contractor with a history of safety violations now faces two new cases alleging continued lack of fall protection, federal authorities say.

The Occupational Safety and Health Administration has cited Jasper Contractors, of Baton Rouge, LA, for seven alleged violations, including two willful, at two residential sites in Jacksonville, FL, the agency announced March 5.

Proposed fines total $186,200.

OSHA roofers
OSHA

Jasper Contractors were observed working atop roofs at heights of 11 and 13 feet without adequate fall protection.

The cases (from August and December 2014) mark the10th and 11th against Jasper Contractors in five years, according to OSHA records.

'Preventable Danger'

"Jasper Contractors has violated fall-protection and safe-ladder usage rules numerous times; yet, we still find workers exposed to preventable danger," said Brian Sturtecky, OSHA's area director in Jacksonville.

"We will continue to cite violations and issue penalties when employers fail in their responsibility to protect workers."

An OSHA spokesman said the company had contested the new violations with the area director.

Jasper Contractors did not respond Monday (March 23) to a request for comment. Founded in 2004, the company specializes in residential, commercial and metal roofing with 74 employees nationwide.

Lack of Fall Protection

The new citations (available here and here) allege that workers were seen atop roofs in Jacksonville and Green Cove Springs without fall protection.

Roofers
© iStock.com / LesPalenik

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

OSHA issued the company two willful violations, each with $70,000 in proposed fines, for allegedly allowing employees to perform roofing work at heights of 11 and 13 feet without fall protection, according to OSHA.

A willful violation is OSHA’s highest and most expensive level of safety infraction.

Repeat, Serious Infractions

The agency also issued repeat violations for not ensuring that workers on the ground wore head protection while cleaning up debris thrown off the roof; not wearing eye protection; and allowing workers to climb a 24-foot ladder while carrying a load in their hands.

Proposed penalties for those alleged infractions ranged from $8,800 to $13,200.

A repeated violation exists when an employer has been cited previously for the same or a similar violation of a standard, regulation, rule or order at any facility in federal enforcement states within the last five years.

OSHA
OSHA

Jasper Construction was also hit with two alleged serious violations for failing to extend the ladder at least three feet above the upper landing surface and placing a ladder at an unsafe angle.

The company received citations for similar violations in 2012 and 2013 at jobsites in Colorado and Florida.

The contractor was also hit with two alleged serious violations, carrying $13,200 in fines, for failing to extend the ladder at least three feet above the upper landing surface and placing a ladder at an unsafe angle.

Serious violations occur 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.

Past Cases

Five of  Jasper’s OSHA cases filed since 2009 have been closed, most with reductions in fines, according to OSHA records.

The company is also contesting two cases from March and May 2014, as well as the $70,000 and $92,000 in fines issued in those cases.

Another case from March 2014 remains open, however, with a payment plan in place for the $37,800 fine.

   

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

Comment from john lienert, (3/24/2015, 10:10 AM)

Jasper needs to quit roofing.....or find a higher level government official to bribe


Comment from M. Halliwell, (3/24/2015, 10:50 AM)

Or better yet, John, they need to actually give a **** about their employees. Maybe invest in fall arrest gear, proper training and supervisors / superintendents who enforce the rules so that all their workers home safe at the end of the day. If they won't, then they do need to take down their shingle (or have it taken down for them).


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