Safety and OSHA News

‘Callous disregard’ for safety leads to $89K OSHA fine

An Illinois roofing contractor has been cited by OSHA 19 times for fall hazards since 2006. An OSHA official said the contractor has shown “utter indifference” to the law. 

Robert Barringer, the owner of Barringer Brothers Roofing, continued his long history with OSHA noncompliance after a recent inspection in May 2016.

Inspectors observed five roofers working at 13 feet without fall protection. The roofers were working at a residential construction site in Glen Carbon, IL.

OSHA slapped Barringer with two willful, two repeated and six serious safety violations, including failure to:

  • provide eye protection to employees using nail guns
  • ensure fall protection anchorage points were installed to support at least 5,000 pounds per employee
  • provide a competent person to do regular jobsite inspections
  • provide fire extinguishers to employees carrying gasoline cans in vehicles, and
  • initiate and maintain an accident prevention program.

The total fines for this recent inspection are $89,100.

Barringer is currently in default on $267,900 in federal penalties. OSHA has cited him 19 times under various company names over the past decade, mainly for failing to protect workers from fall hazards.

OSHA has cited Barringer under the company names Barringer Brothers Roofing, Barringer Brothers Inc., and Barringer Brothers Construction Inc.

In April 2016, OSHA placed Barringer in the Severe Violator Enforcement Program after citing fall hazards at three different jobsites. His company hasn’t responded to the April citations or the proposed penalties of $103,840. OSHA says it’s currently working to collect the default fines.

Aaron Priddy, OSHA’s area director in Fairview Heights, said in a press release:

“Robert Barringer has shown callous disregard for the safety of his employees and utter indifference to the law. OSHA will use every option available to hold him accountable for his shameless behavior.”

OSHA also noted that falls are the construction industry’s most lethal danger. Statistics show falls cause four out of every 10 deaths in the industry.

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