Ohio Contractor Faces $1M in Fall Protection Fines
A Millersburg, Ohio, contractor with a long history of disregarding workplace safety standards now faces more than $1 million in penalties after an inspection by the U.S. Department of Labor’s Occupational Safety and Health Administration found their employees working at dangerous heights without fall protection, this time at a West Virginia work site.
Responding to a complaint from roofing workers atop a two-story office building without fall protection on March 29, 2022, OSHA found Charm Builders Ltd. allowing employees, some at heights up to 28 feet, to work without required protection, and exposing them to the construction industry’s most deadly hazard.
OSHA issued citations for 12 violations – six egregious-willful, five repeat and one serious – for failing to ensure the use of fall protection, not training employees on fall hazards, allowing unsafe use of portable ladders, and not making sure workers used safety glasses. This marks the 12th time that OSHA has cited Charm Builders since 2009 for violations related to fall hazards. OSHA has placed the contractor on its severe violators list.
The agency has proposed $1,090,231 in penalties.
"It is unconscionable when construction contractors put workers at risk and undercut law-abiding companies by failing to invest in basic, life-saving protections," said Assistant Secretary for Occupational Safety and Health Doug Parker. "We will use all of our available legal powers to hold accountable employers like Charm Builders who continually put people in serious jeopardy."
In fiscal year 2021, the agency issued citations for fall protection failures in the construction industry more than any other workplace safety standard. OSHA reports that 351 of the 1,008 construction workers who died on the job in 2020 were victims of falls from elevation.
Based in Millersburg, Charm Builders Ltd. is a roofing and siding contractor that works throughout Ohio, West Virginia and Pennsylvania. 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.