Fall hazards kill and injure more construction workers than any other workplace hazard. Falls are common from roofs and unprotected skylights, but scaffolds and other temporary structures can be dangerous too.
Workers at Y.V. Construction Corp. received numerous safety citations after safety inspectors discovered that employees were being exposed to scaffold and fall hazards while laying brick at a residential construction site.
When Does OSHA Require Fall Protection?
If employees are working on scaffolding more than 10 feet above a lower level, the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) requires employers to provide fall protection. OSHA-approved protections include personal fall-arrest systems or guardrail systems.
Workers at YVC’s site were exposed to falls of up to 13 feet without any fall protection. Falls from as low as 6 feet can result in broken bones as well as brain and spinal injuries.
Is Fall Protection Different for Bricklayers?
Many of YVC’s offenses were considered repeat violations, because the company had already been warned about similar hazards during a 2011 inspection. This case was especially egregious, because the workers were laying brick at the time.
Employees performing overhand bricklaying operations from a supported scaffold must be protected on all open sides and ends of the scaffold, because falling bricks can cause serious injuries. Toerails can also stop tools from falling over the edge and injuring workers on lower levels.
Even after multiple warnings, some construction companies refuse to resolve the hazards on their work sites. By doing so, they put their employees’ lives and health in danger, and that is unacceptable.
Workers’ Comp Attorneys in Middlesex, NJ
Spevack Law Firm has been protecting New Jersey workers since 1928. If you need to discuss a workers comp claim, schedule a free consultation with a licensed attorney today. For more information on your rights as a worker, follow our firm on Facebook or Google Plus.
[Did You Know: In 2012, more than 2,000 workers nationwide suffered injuries due to scaffold hazards. Is your job protecting you?]
Spevack Law Firm – Middlesex County Personal Injury Lawyers