U.S. Department of Labor | Dec. 21, 2015
Area builder cited for dangerous fall hazards twice in a month
Don Bosco of Batavia puts workers at-risk again, OSHA proposes total fines of $162K
BATAVIA, Ill. - Twice in a month, the U.S. Department of Labor’s Occupational Safety and Health Administration has cited a Batavia builder after an OSHA inspector saw employees working on a residential framing project without fall protection. The agency issued two willful and five serious safety citations to Don Bosco LLC on Dec. 17. Proposed penalties total $162,000.
Falls are a leading cause of death for construction workers, accounting for nearly 40 percent of construction fatalities in 2014.
As the construction industry continues to grow, falls
continue to be the leading cause of death.
Yr 2010-255 Yr 2011- 255 Yr 2012- 279
Yr 2013 - 291 Yr 2014-337- BLS data for 2014 is preliminary
On Aug. 25, 2015, an OSHA inspector observed eight employees doing residential construction in Wheaton. They razed rafters without fall protection, such as guardrails, safety nets or personal fall prevention devices. Further inspection found workers at risk of falls of more than 14 feet due to unguarded floor openings, unguarded windows, and unprotected sides, as they performed sheeting and other residential building activities.
“Don Bosco continues to ignore OSHA standards and is failing to protect its employees on the job,” said Jake Scott, OSHA’s area director in North Aurora. “OSHA will continue to monitor this employer for compliance, and do everything in its power to keep workers safely out of life-threatening working conditions.”
The agency also determined that the company exposed workers to fall hazards by allowing use of stairways and landings without guard rails, and the possibility of electrical shock from damaged extension cords and lack of ground fault circuit interrupters.
OSHA cited the company on Nov. 30, 2015, for similar hazards found on June 23, 2015, and proposed fines of $103,000.
OSHA offers a Stop Falls online resource with detailed information in English and Spanish on fall protection standards. The page provides 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.
The agency’s ongoing Fall Prevention Campaign, which began in 2012, was developed in partnership with the National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health and NIOSH’s National Occupational Research Agenda program. The campaign provides employers with lifesaving information and educational materials on how to prevent falls, provide the right equipment for workers and train employees to use gear properly.
View current citations here:
Don Bosco 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.
To ask questions, obtain compliance assistance, file a complaint, or report amputations, eye loss, 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 North Aurora office at 630-896-8700.
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: 15-2431-CHI
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).