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Arizona contractors fined more than $407K after worker’s death

PHOENIX — Two Arizona contractors have been fined more than $407,000 after a worker fell to his death while on the job.

Design Plastering, Inc., and Design Plastering West, LLC, were fined a total of $407,400 by the Arizona Occupational Safety and Health Administration after Jorge Carrion Torres fell from the third-floor balcony of a Dallas, Texas apartment complex earlier this year.

OSHA said the Phoenix-based companies failed to install scaffolding or provide other fall-prevention devices at the complex.

“When an employer fails to put up a guardrail or scaffolding, or doesn’t provide personal fall-arrest systems, anyone working at a height of six feet or more is defenseless against a fall,” Dr. David Michaels, assistant secretary of labor for OSHA, said.

One contractor, Design Plastering, had been cited at least seven times — resulting in at least $5,850 in fines — prior for not providing fall protection.

“This senseless loss of a man’s life is the result of this employer’s failure to comply with clear OSHA safety requirements despite the fact that it had been previously cited for the same violations,” Michaels said.

Falls account for nearly 40 percent of construction fatalities, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics.

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