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Roofing Contractor Faces Steep OSHA Penalties After Fatal Fall

August 6 2019

 The U.S. Department of Labor's Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) has cited Shawn D. Purvis, the owner of Purvis Home Improvement Co. Inc., for egregious, willful and repeated workplace safety violations. This action follows the death of one of Purvis' employees, Alan Loignon, in Portland, Maine on December 13, 2018. Mr. Loignon fell from a third-story roof and later died from his injuries. He was not wearing a means of fall protection to prevent him from falling. Mr. Purvis had an extensive history of workplace safety violations and was aware of the required safeguards to protect against fall hazards.

OSHA found that Purvis knowingly failed to ensure the use of fall protection by his employees on two sites. OSHA therefore cited Mr. Purvis for 13 egregious willful violations – one for each exposed employee per job site. The resulting penalties totaled $1,792,726. Mr. Purvis' attorney has stated that he intends to challenge these fines.

Mr. Purvis has also been indicted for manslaughter and workplace manslaughter charges for the death of Mr. Loignon. If Mr. Purvis is convicted of manslaughter, he faces as much as 30 years in prison and a $50,000.00 fine. For more information regarding OSHA fall protection requirements, you can go to https://www.osha.gov/SLTC/fallprotection/.

— Katharine Meyer, TAUC General Counsel, GKG Law, P.C. Washington, D.C.

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