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Region 6 News Release: 13-1824-DAL
Sept. 11, 2013
Contact: Diana Petterson      Juan Rodriguez
Phone: 972-850-4710      972-850-4709
Email: petterson.diana@dol.gov      rodriguez.juan@dol.gov

Residential decking subcontractor in Burleson, Texas, cited by US Labor
Department's OSHA for exposing workers to repeat fall hazards
Company fined $45,100 for four repeat safety violations

BURLESON, Texas – The U.S. Department of Labor's Occupational Safety and Health Administration has cited residential decking subcontractor Alvaro Lozano for four repeat safety violations for exposing workers to fall hazards while they installed roof sheathing on a single-story residential home in Burleson. Proposed penalties total $45,100. OSHA's Fort Worth Area Office opened an inspection in April under the agency's regional emphasis program on fall prevention in construction.

"Fall hazards continue to be problematic and are the leading cause of death in the construction industry. In this case, workers were exposed to unpredictable fall hazards caused by uneven sheathing, sudden gusts of wind, loose materials and surfaces that become slick when wet," said Jack Rector, area director of OSHA's Fort Worth Area Office. "This is not the first time this employer has exposed workers to potential workplace hazards. Employers are responsible for ensuring workers are trained to recognize and avoid these hazards. Fall protection measures reduce risks and saves lives."

The repeat serious violations involve failing to ensure workers use fall protection when engaged in residential construction; provide hard hats to workers exposed to possible head injuries; provide safety glasses for operating pneumatic nail guns or circular saws; and use ladders that should extend above the landing surface by at least 3 feet. 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.

OSHA regulations dictate that when working from heights, such as on ladders, scaffolds and roofs, employers must plan projects to ensure that the job is done safely and the workers are protected. Employers must provide fall protection and the right equipment for the job, including the correct ladders, scaffolds and safety gear. Workers also need training to understand the proper setup and safe use of specific equipment they will use to complete the job.

OSHA's fall prevention campaign was developed in partnership with the National Institute of Occupational Safety and Health and NIOSH's National Occupational Research Agenda program. More information on fall protection standards and educational materials is available in English and Spanish at http://www.osha.gov/stopfalls. A fact sheet on roof sheathing is available at https://www.osha.gov/Publications/reducing-falls-during-residential-construction-roof-sheathing.pdf*.

The company has 15 business days from receipt of its citations to comply, request an informal conference with OSHA's Fort Worth area director, or contest the citations and proposed penalties before the independent Occupational Safety and 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 Fort Worth office at 817-581-7303.

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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U.S. Department of Labor news materials are accessible at http://www.dol.gov. The information above is available in large print, Braille or CD from the COAST office upon request by calling 292-693-7828 or TTY 292-693-7755.


* Accessibility Assistance: Contact OSHA's Office of Communications at 202-693-1999 for assistance accessing PDF materials.


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