New York Roofing Contractor Agrees to Pay Large Fine for Safety Violations

construction workersA New York roofing company has halted its appeal of the citations stemming from the 2022 construction accident death of a worker, which officials say was the result of safety violations. According to a news report, the Department of Labor engaged in “vigorous litigation” with the contractor convincing the company to file a notice of withdrawal with the independent Occupational Safety and Health Review Commission on March 1. With this move, the company accepted eight citations and the $687,536 penalty attached to them.

Multiple Fall Safety Violations

The action follows an August 2022 Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) inspection at a residential construction site in New Jersey where a compliance officer reported observing multiple employees working on a steep slope without fall protection. OSHA found violations related to lack of fall protection, unsafe ladder use and additional ladder-related hazards as well as lack of head protection. Officials said the inspection came less than six months after an employee suffered a fatal fall at a construction site in Spring Valley, New York in February 2022.

The company’s principal and founder pleaded guilty in February 2024 to criminal charges that were filed by the U.S. Attorney for the Southern District of New York in July 2023. In August 2023, the roofing company was issued $1.3 million in penalties after OSHA investigated the fatal fall. In February 2019, a company employee died in a fall at Kiamesha Lake construction site. Since 2019, OSHA has inspected the company 10 times and cited multiple fall-related violations.

Preventing Falls from Roofs

Roofing accidents involving falls are a significant concern in the construction industry, prompting stringent regulations and guidelines by OSHA to prevent such incidents. OSHA’s fall prevention measures for roofing work focus on ensuring the safety of workers at heights through proper training, equipment, and work practices.

OSHA mandates the use of personal fall arrest systems (PFAS) when working at heights of 6 feet or more in construction. This includes harnesses, lanyards, and anchor points designed to arrest a worker’s fall and minimize injury. Workers are required to be provided with adequate training on the use of PFAS and ensure their proper inspection and maintenance.

In addition to personal protective equipment, OSHA emphasizes the importance of proper scaffolding, ladder safety, and roof edge protection systems. Regular safety inspections, hazard assessments, and safety training programs are essential components of OSHA’’ comprehensive approach to preventing roofing accidents and falls, aiming to create a safer working environment for all construction workers.

Compensation for Workers and Families

Worksite accidents can result in serious injuries not only for workers, but also passersby. Injuries from these types of accidents can prove catastrophic or even fatal. Injured victims or families of deceased construction accident victims can seek compensation from at-fault parties including, but not limited to, the construction company, general contractor, subcontractor, building owner, crane operator, maintenance firm, etc.

Workers who have been injured in fall-related accidents can receive workers’ compensation benefits, which covers medical expenses and a portion of lost wages. In addition, workers may also be able to file a third-party claim against a negligent (careless) party other than the employer or co-employees for significant monetary damages and have two sources of compensation available for their losses.

Examples of third parties include, but are not limited to, general contractors, construction companies, sub-contractors, building owners, managing agents etc. In cases where a worker dies from injuries suffered on the job, surviving family members may seek death benefits through workers’ compensation and/or file a wrongful death claim against a third party.

Contacting an Experienced Lawyer

If you or a loved one has been injured in a construction accident, the experienced New York personal injury attorneys at the Law Offices of Kenneth A. Wilhelm can help you better understand your legal rights and options, and also fight hard to recover just compensation for you. For over 52 years, our skilled accident attorneys have established a proven track record of helping injured victims get fair compensation for their losses.

Our law firm recovered $3,375,576 for a construction worker (an undocumented immigrant) who was injured on the job — one of the highest construction case settlements in New York that year. Our law firm also recovered $3,000,000 for a man who fell and suffered two broken legs when he walked into an open elevator shaft. Also, one of our clients obtained a verdict for $43,940,000 and another of our clients got a verdict for $23,500,000, both in medical malpractice cases.

Please contact us TOLL FREE 24 hours a day, 7 days a week at 1-800-WORK-4-YOU (1-800-967-5496). WE CAN EVEN COME TO YOU. There is no attorneys’ fee unless we recover money for you. We can also help with personal injury, lead poisoning and medical malpractice cases including, brachial plexus palsy (Erb’s palsy) and cerebral palsy cases in New York, New Jersey, Connecticut, Pennsylvania, or Florida. If you have been seriously injured in any of the 50 U.S. states, please call us and we will try to help you with your case.

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