OSHA Issues $270K in Fines to Four Contractors For Hazards Related to Fall Protection

OSHA recently issued citations totaling $272,720 to four contractors following an inspection of a project involving the construction of a mid-town Manhattan hotel.  Notably, the fines were issued even though no one was hurt.  The inspection was conducted as the result of a complaint that workers were being exposed to fall hazards.

The contractor receiving the heaviest of the fines, Flintlock Construction Services, LLC, is a general contractor and it was cited  for seven violations of OSHA’s fall protection and scaffolding standards for workers being exposed to potentially fatal falls of up to 26 feet while they were on scaffolding. Flintlock allegedly failed to provide and ensure the use of fall protection, such as guardrails or personal fall arrest systems.  In addition, the scaffolding lacked a  safe means of access, causing workers to climb its cross-bracing.  Furhter, the scaffolding was not fully planked and was not tied off to restrain it from tipping.

Flintlock was fined approximately $250,000 for the seven violations.  It also has been placed in OSHA’s Severe Violator Enforcement Program (SVEP), which mandates targeted follow-up inspections to ensure compliance with the law.  OSHA’s SVEP focuses on recalcitrant employers that endanger workers by committing willful, repeat or failure-to-abate violations.

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