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OSHA Adds $89K to Roofer's Unpaid Bill

Monday, August 22, 2016

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An Illinois roofing contractor is facing $89,100 in federal worker-safety fines on top of more than $250,000 in past penalties that the government says he has failed to pay.

Robert Barringer III, operating in Swansea, IL, under the name Barringer Brothers Roofing, was issued 10 new violations based on a May 2016 inspection, the Occupational Safety and Health Administration recently announced. Barringer has done work in the past under the name Barringer Brothers Construction and Barringer Brothers Inc., according to OSHA. Swansea is located just southeast of St. Louis.

Roofer with nail gun
© / BanksPhotos

Roofing contractor Robert Barringer III, of Swansea, IL, was issued 10 new worker safety violations and is reportedly in default on more than $250,000 in federal penalties.

The new citation represents the 19th time OSHA has cited Barringer in the past decade. Many of the violations relate to fall protection.

The Violations

The latest set of violations stems from an inspection at a jobsite in Glen Carbon, IL. Alleged violations include:

  • Failing to ensure use of fall protection systems when required;
  • Improper anchoring and deployment of personal fall arrest equipment;
  • Failing to inspect personal fall arrest equipment;
  • Failing to ensure proper limitations on the arresting force of personal fall arrest systems;
  • Failing to supply a fire extinguisher in a vehicle carrying a canister of gasoline;
  • Failing to ensure the use of eye and face protection when necessary;
  • Failing to initiate or maintain an accident prevention program (a repeat violation); and
  • Failing to initiate a regular jobsite inspection system (also a repeat violation).

The two repeat violations add up to $44,000 in penalties. Two violations deemed “willful”—involving lack of fall protection and lack of eye and face protection—add up to $27,500. The remaining “serious” violations rack up a bill of $17,600.

'Severe Violator'

OSHA placed Barringer in the “Severe Violator Enforcement Program” in April of this year after fall-protection violations were uncovered on three separate jobsites. Violations alleged stemming from inspections in June and October 2015 and January 2016, totaling $103,840, are listed by the agency as having been referred to debt collection.

OSHA logo
Occupational Safety and Health Administration

OSHA placed Barringer in its "Severe Violator Enforcement Program" in 2016 due to multiple repeat violations.

Prior to those citations, Barringer faced one citation based on a 2013 inspection; one citation based on a 2012 inspection; four citations in 2010; two in 2008; and three in 2007. OSHA says Barringer is in default on a total of $267,900 in federal fines.

OSHA’s enforcement database also shows that inspections were conducted on Barringer jobsites in early July and early August of this year; no violation information is available for those inspections yet.

'Callous Disregard'

OSHA requires that fall protection be provided for workers performing tasks at 6 feet or more above the ground on construction sites. OSHA literature pertaining specifically to the protection of roofers is available here.

A phone number listed for Barringer Brothers Roofing was disconnected when Durability + Design attempted to reach the company Friday (August 19).

"Robert Barringer has shown a callous disregard for the safety of his employees and utter indifference to the law. OSHA will use every option available to us to hold him accountable for his shameless behavior," said Aaron Priddy, OSHA's area director in Fairview Heights.


Tagged categories: Fall protection; Good Technical Practice; Health and safety; North America; OSHA; Roofing contractors; Safety; Violations

Comment from Dennis Carrington, (8/22/2016, 8:01 AM)

Im trying to picture what fall protection looks like for just over 6 feet. Say you want to secure a gutter attachment that came loose. One would spend more time securing a harness lead than the actual repair--No?

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