Department of Labor Logo OSHA News Release - Region 5


June 8, 2023

 

Federal safety inspectors find Illinois contractor with long history of violations again exposing employees to dangerous workplace hazards

For 7th time since 2015, OSHA cites United Custom Homes for defying safety standards

ORLAND PARK, IL – For the seventh time since 2015, federal workplace safety inspectors have cited an Oswego contractor who refuses to protect carpenters working at elevations, as required by federal law.

Inspectors with the U.S. Department of Labor Occupational Safety and Health Administration observed six carpenters employed by United Custom Homes LLC framing new townhomes in Orland Park on April 12, 2023, at heights up to 21 feet without fall protection, and opened an investigation.

OSHA learned that, in addition to not providing fall protection equipment, the contractor failed to train workers on the use of fall protection and forklift operations and did not provide workers with eye protection.

After the Orland Park inspection, the company received OSHA citations for one willful violation, one repeat violation and two serious violations with proposed penalties of $151,260. The findings in this inspection are similar to fall protection violations OSHA identified at six other United Custom Homes' worksites in the Chicago area since 2015. Currently, the company owes more than $81,000 in unpaid OSHA penalties.

"United Custom Homes' continued defiance toward federal safety regulations is putting their employees at risk of serious and sometimes fatal fall injuries," said OSHA Chicago South Area Director James Martineck in Tinley Park, Illinois. "Falls are a leading cause of death in the construction industry. By failing to comply with the law yet again, United Custom Homes' employees face real dangers that federal safety standards can prevent."

United Custom Homes LLC provides residential and commercial carpentry, remodeling and general contractor services. The Oswego company is owned by Juan Guerrero.

OSHA's stop falls website offers safety information and video presentations in English and Spanish to teach workers about fall hazards and proper safety procedures.

The company has 15 business days from receipt of its citations and penalties to comply, request an informal conference with OSHA's area director, or contest the findings before the independent Occupational Safety and Health Review Commission.

Learn more about OSHA.

 

Media Contacts:

Scott Allen, 312-353-4727, allen.scott@dol.gov
Rhonda Burke, 312-353-4807, burke.rhonda@dol.gov

Release Number: 23-878-CHI