OSHA Violations Can Cost You Money and Your Life

By keith bateman on March 11, 2016

“Yet another worker has died needlessly because his employer failed to protect his safety. This has to stop,” said Ken Montgomery, OSHA’s area director in Cincinnati.

In 2014, The Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) published that of over 800+ reported construction site related fatalities, close to 40% of them were related to falls. R&B Contractors LLC in Ohio learned the hard way that ignoring the Federal occupational safety regulations can cost you more than a couple hundred thousand dollars in OSHA fines and workers' compensation, it can actually cost you the life of one of your dedicated team members.

OSHA found that the death of the R&B Contractors worker could have been prevented if proper fall protection and occupational safety training had been conducted to ensure the workplace safety of all the crew members. After OSHA's investigation had concluded, they found a total of 15 safety violations that included findings of purposely failing to comply with OSHA regulations or neglecting to act on behalf of employee safety. These willful violations of workplace safety are often the most dangerous, yet the most preventable. 

 Stats on OSHA violations Source: OSHA

The worker for R&B was doing roof construction when he died from a 40-foot fall. OSHA's investigation found that R&B had not taken the proper steps necessary to ensure that employees were trained on fall protection and hazard communication, given access to an occupational safety plan or given a tool to submit/review a history of accidents and violations. According to OSHA, there were no safety nets, guardrails, or fall prevention devices found in place at the time of the fall.

The evidence above points to large scale negligence and something that could have easily been prevented if the tools had been in place to let the management team know that safety violations were present at that fateful project site. With a small investment in a data collection platform, R&B could have kept their employees safe and avoided a OSHA fine in excess of $110,000.

The Canvas platform continues to help contractors and construction companies increase the visibility into the real dangers that exist on their project sites. Popular forms like Job Safety Analysis(JSA)Fall Prevention ChecklistAccident Inspection, and Tool Box Talks are all available within the GoCanvas platform for employees to fill out and review at an on-site consultation.  All this information can now be transmitted and stored in real-time on the cloud or in existing ERP systems, so that if hazards are present, correctable actions can be made before work-related injuries occur. 

Every company's goal should be to increase productivity and OSHA compliance. By implementing Canvas, you are able to check both of those boxes and measure safety and health metrics on day one.