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Region 6 News Release: 14-633-DAL
April 21, 2014
Contact: Diana Petterson      Juan Rodriguez
Phone: 972-850-4710      972-850-4710
Email: petterson.diana@dol.gov      rodriguez.juan@dol.gov

Houston contractor fined $70,000 for willfully exposing workers to fall hazards

HOUSTON – Amalda Enterprises Inc. has been cited by the U.S. Department of Labor's Occupational Safety and Health Administration with one willful violation for exposing workers to fall hazards while installing gutters at a construction site in Houston. The proposed penalty is $70,000.

OSHA's Houston North Area Office began the March inspection under a regional enforcement initiative to prevent deaths among workers in the construction industry. In 2011, more than 260 workers in the United States were killed by falls in the construction industry. In Texas, there were 28 construction-related fatalities from slips, trips and falls in 2012.

"Falls are the leading cause of fatalities in the construction industry, and Amalda Enterprise is very much aware of how to protect its workers. Such disregard for worker safety will not be tolerated, which is why OSHA issued the maximum penalty amount under the law for this violation," said David Doucet, OSHA's area director in the Houston North office.

The willful violation was cited for exposing employees who were working on an unprotected side or edge of a building to falls. Three workers were installing gutters from the roof of a newly built warehouse without fall protection, ultimately exposing these workers to falls of 21 feet or more. Two of the workers were wearing body harnesses, but the employer failed to install a guardrail system, safety net system or personal fall arrest system that included an anchorage point for attac