CINNAMINSON, N.J. - Workers of Berlin Builders, a residential construction contractor with projects throughout Southern New Jersey, are a step away from a serious injury or worse because their employer routinely exposes them to dangerous falls by ignoring safety standards that are required by law.
Separate inspections at New Jersey worksites in Haddonfield, Robbinsville, Glassboro and Lakewood by the U.S. Department of Labor's Occupational Safety and Health Administration resulted in a total of 19 repeat and eight serious violations for the Cinnaminson-based company. Berlin Builders faces a total of $198,550 in federal penalties, including:
310 East Park Ave, Haddonfield $47,080
15, Sapphire Road, Robbinsville $42,570
130 1st St., Lakewood $61,380
2500 Gianna Drive, Glassboro $47,520
OSHA opened the inspections under its local emphasis program focused on falls. Falls are the leading cause of death in the construction industry, responsible for 40 percent of the industry's workplace fatalities in 2014.
"By refusing to provide the proper fall protection, Berlin Builders is jeopardizing the lives and well-being of its employees and their families," said Paula Dixon-Roderick, director of OSHA's Marlton Area Office. "Four in 10 construction workers who die as a result of workplace injury suffer a fall, so it's vital that construction companies take responsibility to ensure worker safety. No one should have to compromise their safety in order to earn a paycheck."
Inspectors found Berlin Builders failed to:
Provide fall protection for workers exposed to fall hazards as high as 29 feet.
Train employees on fall protection.
Inspect jobsites for hazards.
Train employees on how to use ladders properly.
OSHA also cited the company for similar violations in 2015.
In addition to the fall hazards, the agency issued serious citations for a lack of personal protection equipment, damaged electrical cords, and the lack of fall protection in an aerial lift.
To view the citations, visit: http://www.osha.gov/ooc/citations/BerlinBuilders_1090814.pdf*
The company has 15 business days from receipt of its citations and proposed penalties to comply, request a conference with OSHA's area director, or contest the findings before the Occupational Safety and Health Review Commission.
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