11 Contractors at N.Y. Mall Project Face $135,700 in Fall Hazards Fines

OSHA cited 11 contractors, chiefly from western and central New York, for failing to protect their employees against fall hazards during a mall construction project in New York. The employers face combined penalties totaling $135,700.

"What's disturbing is the breadth and frequency of fall hazards observed throughout this jobsite, encompassing a wide variety of construction trades," said Arthur Dube, OSHA's area director in Buffalo. "This situation is unacceptable. Falls are the number one killer in construction work. It takes only one misstep, be it from a roof, scaffold, ladder, or into a hole, to cause death or disabling injury."

OSHA conducted an inspection in response to a complaint alleging fall hazards. The agency identified a variety of such hazards, including lack of fall protection for employees working at heights of six feet or greater; missing or inadequate guardrails; an uncovered storm drain; ladder deficiencies; a missing stairway, ramp, or ladder; an employee tied off to the basket of a boom truck while standing on a roof; and lack of fall protection training and programs. The largest fine, $78,500, was proposed against the mall project's general contractor, for alleged willful, repeat, and serious violations of fall and other safety standards.

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