May 15, 2015BOS 2014-104
Record snowfall highlights why fall safety is a year-round concern
OSHA encourages New Hampshire employers to join 2015 National Safety Stand-Down
CONCORD, N.H. - After record-setting snowfall last winter, New Hampshire residents scrambled to get heavy snow off their roofs to avoid damage. At the same time, U.S. Department of Labor Occupational Safety and Health Administration inspectors found contractors who ignored hazards and had employees remove snow from roofs without using required fall protection.
"This winter was difficult in New England, but safety is vital no matter the season. Without fall protection, workers risked serious injury or worse. No concern ever outweighs the value of someone's livelihood or life. In 2013, falls killed 294 of the 796 construction workers who died on-the-job in the U.S.," said Rosemarie Ohar Cole, OSHA's New Hampshire area director.
Between Jan. 29 and March 4, OSHA recorded 42 violations of fall-related hazards by 16 employers who collectively face fines totaling $123,960. Inspections took place in Concord, Derry, Hanover, Hooksett, Meredith, Merrimack, Moultonborough, Nashua, Penacook, Portsmouth, Stratham and Weare. View the citations here*.
New Hampshire employers are encouraged to join companies nationwide to focus on fall safety in the 2015 National Safety Stand-Down through May 15. During the two-week event, employers and workers are voluntarily stopping work at job sites and participating in fall safety activities. These activities may include safety talks, fall protection presentations and equipment review, or demonstrations and training on how to use safety harnesses and guardrails to prevent falls.
The Stand-Down is part of OSHA's ongoing fall prevention campaign to raise public awareness of and reduce workplace fall hazards. To ask questions, obtain compliance assistance, file a complaint or report workplace hospitalizations, fatalities or situations posing imminent danger to workers, the public should call OSHA's toll-free hotline at 800-321-OSHA (6742) or the agency's Concord Area Office at 603-225-1629.
Under the Occupational Safety and Health Act of 1970, employers are responsible for providing safe and healthful workplaces for their employees. OSHA's role is to ensure these conditions for America's working men and women by setting and enforcing standards, and providing training, education and assistance. For more information, visit http://www.osha.gov.
# # #
Release Number: 15-931-BOS
U.S. Department of Labor news materials are accessible at http://www.dol.gov. The department's Reasonable Accommodation Resource Center converts departmental information and documents into alternative formats, which include Braille and large print. For alternative format requests, please contact the department at (202) 693-7828 (voice) or (800) 877-8339 (federal relay).
*Accessibility Assistance: Contact OSHA's Office of Communications at 202-693-1999 for assistance accessing PDF materials.