OSHA Takes Steps to Protect Roofers

OSHA recently announced a new directive that withdraws an earlier one allowing residential builders to bypass fall protection requirements.
The 1995 policy was initially intended to be temporary. It was the result of concerns about the feasibility of fall protection in residential building construction. (WCxKit)
However, OSHA says there continues to be a high number of fall-related deaths in construction and believes that feasibility is no longer an issue.
The recent action requires all residential construction employers to comply with 29 CFR 1926.501(b) (13).
Construction and roofing companies will have up to 6 months to comply with the new policy.
OSHA has developed training and compliance material for small employers and will host a webinar for those interested in learning more about compliance.
Resources are available on the agency Web site at: http://www.osha.gov/doc/residential_fall_protection.html.
Fatalities from falls are the number one cause of workplace deaths in construction,” said OSHA Chief Dr. David Michaels. “We cannot tolerate workers getting killed in residential construction when effective means are readily available to prevent those deaths,” Michaels added.
According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, an average of 40 workers are killed each year as a result of falls from residential roofs. (WCxKit)
OSHA points out that a third of those are Latino workers who often lack sufficient access to safety information and protections.

Author Robert Elliott
, executive vice president, Amaxx Risks Solutions, Inc. has worked successfully for 20 years with many industries to reduce Workers Compensation costs, including airlines, healthcare, printing/publishing, pharmaceuticals, retail, hospitality and manufacturing. See www.LowerWC.com for more information.  Contact:  Info@ReduceYourWorkersComp.com or 860-553-6604.
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