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Michael Hersh, of Kelley/Uustal. Michael Hersh, of Kelley/Uustal.

In January, the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) cited Florida Roofing Experts Inc., a Jacksonville roofing contractor, for failing to protect workers from falls. OSHA proposed over $1 million in penalties. According to OSHA, Florida Roofing Experts Inc. has an extensive history of violations demonstrating disregard for worker safety.

OSHA has promulgated fall protection standards and provides employers with numerous resources to help them comply with those safety standards. Fall protection and related training requirements routinely fall within the top 10 cited OSHA standards, according to the agency. Of the nearly 5,000 private industry worker fatalities each year, over 20% are in a construction setting and more than a third of construction-related deaths result from falls. According to OSHA, falls is the leading cause of private sector fatalities in the construction industry and is considered one of the “fatal four.” OSHA proclaims that if the fatal four (which in addition to falls includes strikes with objects, electrocution and caught-in/between) were eliminated, many hundreds of lives would be saved in the United States every year.

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