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Construction firm faces fine after worker falls 9 feet


The Occupational Safety and Health Administration has cited and proposed $44,800 in penalties against a Minnesota construction company after an employee suffered a traumatic injury after a fall.

The agency issued one willful and three serious safety citations against Farmington, Minnesota-based Merit Construction Services Inc. after conducting an inspection initiated when the company reported a worker fell about 9 feet through a hole onto a concrete floor in July, according to an agency news release issued Thursday. Merit was doing repair work at a parking structure in Milwaukee at the time.

OSHA inspectors found the company exposed workers to falls and other injuries because they failed to provide fall protection and label and secure hole covers to prevent falls, according to the release.

“This traumatic injury was easily preventable by using fall protection devices and carefully marking hazards in an active construction site,” Chris Zortman, OSHA's area director in Milwaukee, said in a statement. “Each year hundreds of workers are injured on the job because employers fail to follow basic safety precautions.”

A company spokesperson could not be immediately reached for comment.

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