OSHA has citedJ.P. Phillips Inc.of Franklin Park for five safety violations after workers were observed working at heights greater than 6 feet without fall protection during a February job site inspection in Crete. The company faces penalties totaling $75,900.
"Falls are a leading cause of injury and death in the construction industry," said Gary Anderson, OSHA's area director in Calumet City. "Employers are responsible for knowing what hazards exist in their workplaces and ensuring that workers are not exposed to unnecessary risks.
Three repeat violations include failing to provide access ladders, fully plank a work platform and have guardrails installed on scaffolding more than 10 feet high. A repeat violation exists when an employer previously has been cited for the same or a similar violation of a standard, regulation, rule or order at any other facility in federal enforcement states within the last five years. The company has been inspected by OSHA nine times since July 2006. Seven of those inspections resulted in citations for 15 serious and repeat violations related to scaffolding hazards.
Two serious violations include a lack of hard hats and general fall protection.
OSHA standards require that an effective form of fall protection, such as guardrails, safety nets or personal fall arrest systems, be in use when workers perform construction work from a scaffold 10 feet or more above the next lower level.
Residential construction companies have less than six weeks to comply with OSHA’s new fall hazard protection requirements. As of June 16, 2011, companies will have to protect employees working six feet or more above lower levels with fall protection methods, such as guardrail systems, safety net systems, or personal fall arrest systems.
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