OSHA fines Florida roofing company $1.5M for job site hazards

A North Florida roofing company is facing proposed penalties of $1,523,710 for failing to protect workers from fall hazards and other dangerous working conditions after an inspector with the Department of Labor’s Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) visited two St. Augustine work sites.

The proposed penalties against Great White Construction Inc. are egregiously high because OSHA has flagged the company for numerous similar safety violations over the past five years and the company is accused of not making a reasonable effort to correct the hazards.

An OSHA press release stated that the employer "has demonstrated indifference towards the safety of their employees."

The OSHA inspector visited the first job site back in February and saw that workers were not using proper fall protection when they were removing roof materials from a building in the Crescent Beach area. While the workers were wearing harnesses, the OSHA inspector said they were not tied off appropriately.

At another job site, the inspector said roofers were working in similar conditions, so a follow-up inspection was initiated. After the follow-up inspection, the Jacksonville contractor was hit with 14 violations, 11 of which were "willful."

Great White has been under investigation 12 times over the past six years and has faced 22 OSHA citations. In addition to being cited for improper fall protection, the employer was also cited for violations relating to eye protection and ladder safety.

The best way to protect a business from OSHA violations is to work to ensure your business is complying with the most up-to-date regulations. This helps you maintain a safer workplace for your workers. Additionally, proactively following OSHA’s regulations helps reduce the chances of a safety citation during your next inspection.

If your business has already been flagged by OSHA for violations then you can expect the agency to be keeping a careful watch over your business. This makes it all the more important to have an effective compliance and enforcement plan in place. 

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