Champion Roofing fined $48K for 2 willful safety violations
after workers exposed to dangerous fall hazards in Bradley, Illinois
BRADLEY, Ill. – Employees at a construction site in Bradley were expected to work on a low-sloped roof, 13 feet above the ground without the recommended means of fall protection. Champion Roofing Inc. has been cited for two willful safety violations for exposing workers to these fall hazards by the U.S. Department of Labor's Occupational Safety and Health Administration. OSHA has proposed $48,400 penalties for the violations. The Bensenville, Illinois-based company has been cited by OSHA five times in the past five years for exposing workers to fall hazards.
"Falls remain the leading cause of death in the construction industry. Allowing construction workers on roofs without fall protection is inexcusable negligence," said Kathy Webb, OSHA's area director in Calumet City, Illinois. "Champion Roofing has a legal responsibility to protect workers from fall hazards, and the fact that we keep seeing the same violations over and over again means they are not taking that responsibility seriously. No worker should lose their life for a paycheck."
During its inspection on May 22, OSHA determined that workers at the site were not provided basic fall protections, such as guardrails, safety nets, warning-line systems or personal fall arrest, directly violating OSHA's construction safety standards. They were also exposed to an unprotected skylight while they were on the working surface of the roof. These violations resulted in the two willful citations. A willful violation is one committed with intentional, knowing or voluntary disregard for the law's requirement, or with plain indifference to employee safety and health.
OSHA has created a Stop Falls Web page at http://www.osha.gov/stopfalls/ with detailed information in English and Spanish on fall protection standards. The page offers fact sheets, posters and videos that vividly illustrate various fall hazards and appropriate preventive measures. OSHA standards require that an effective form of fall protection be in use when workers perform construction activities 6 feet or more above the next lower level.
OSHA's ongoing Fall Prevention Campaign provides employers with lifesaving information and educational materials on how to create a plan to prevent falls, provide the right equipment for workers and train employees to use that equipment properly. The campaign launched in 2012, and it was developed in partnership with the National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health and NIOSH's National Occupational Research Agenda program.
Champion Roofing 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 & Health Review Commission.
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 Calumet City office at 708-891-3800.
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.
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