Contractor Cited Sixth Fall Protection Violation in 4 Years

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Originally Published by: U.S. Department of Labor — February 25, 2022
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A Hartsville contractor has been cited for the sixth time since 2018 for exposing workers to deadly fall hazards on two separate Ohio job sites.

Investigators with the U.S. Department of Labor’s Occupational Safety and Health Administration determined ILS Construction and its owner, Ivan Lowky, failed to provide fall protection equipment to workers and train them on its use. OSHA proposed penalties totaling $237,013 following the October and December 2021 inspections.

“Complying with federal safety regulations is not optional. When an employer requires employees to work from heights greater than six feet, they must provide fall protection, appropriate equipment and train workers to use the equipment safely,” said OSHA Area Director Howard Eberts in Cleveland. “Fall hazards make roofing work among the most dangerous jobs in construction and the most frequently cited hazard by federal safety inspectors. Workers should expect their employer to keep them safe on the job and OSHA will hold employers accountable for failing to do so.”

On Dec. 2, 2021, OSHA inspectors observed roofers employed by ILS Construction working on a residential home in Stow. The agency issued three willful, two repeat and two serious violations. OSHA cited the company and Lowky for not providing fall protection and training, failing to ensure workers used hard hats and safety glasses and not providing a ladder extended at least three feet above the landing surface.

At the time of the December inspection, OSHA was already investigating the company after observing employees working at heights greater than 10 feet on a Parma commercial building on Oct. 27. OSHA cited the employer for a lack of fall protection and training and for not providing a ladder or others means to exit elevated surfaces safely.

OSHA previously cited Lowky and ILS Construction for similar hazards in 2018, 2019 and 2020. Lowky has not paid previously issued OSHA penalties.

The Bureau of Labor Statistics reports in 2020 that 1,008 construction workers died on the job, 351 of them are falls from elevation.

OSHA’s stop falls website offers safety information and video presentations in English and Spanish to teach workers about hazards and proper safety procedures. Learn more about OSHA’s annual National Safety Stand-Down to Prevent Falls, set for May 2-6.

The company has 15 business days from receipt of its citations and penalties to comply, request an informal conference with OSHA’s area director, or contest the findings before the independent Occupational Safety and Health Review Commission.

Learn more about OSHA.