Roofing Industry News: July 2019
At Elite Roofing and Restoration Services, we like to stay up to date with the roofing industry’s headlines. Lots of interesting things are happening this summer: OSHA has cracked down on roofing companies that put their workers in danger; Tesla has announced that it is installing solar roofs in 8 states; and a camp in Austin is helping girls learn valuable trade skills.
Here are some eye-catching industry headlines for July 2019:
OSHA Imposes Heavy Fines for Workplace Safety Violators
Two contractors have been heavily penalized by OSHA for exposing their employees to dangerous fall hazards. Homebuilder Florentino Rodriguez of DB Custom Carpentry LLC has been cited 12 times since 2013 for willful safety violations, failing to train employees on fall protection, and failure to train employees on safe forklift operation. The contractor now owes over $797,000 in fines.
Shawn D. Purvis, owner of Purvis Home Improvement Co. Inc., faces $1,792,726 in fines. He has been penalized for 13 counts of “egregious willful, repeat, and serious workplace safety violations” that resulted in a roofer’s tragic death by falling. OSHA inspectors found that Purvis failed to use fall protection at multiple worksites. In addition to the fines, Purvis has been indicted for manslaughter and workplace manslaughter, and faces a $2.5 million wrongful death suit from the fallen roofer’s family.
Falls account for about 40% of all construction workers deaths, so it is vitally important to follow industry best practices for safety.
Tesla Expands Solar Roof Installations
Tesla CEO Elon Musk made a brief mention of their solar roof initiative during a recent shareholder meeting. He announced that the roofs were being installed in 8 different states, though he did not mention which states were involved or how many roofs have been installed.
So far, consumers in Japan are buying most of Tesla’s solar roofs. They are still struggling to gain a foothold in the US and to meet Musk’s prediction that the roofs would cost 16% less than those of competitors. It has proven challenging to create attractive roof tiles that also function as solar cells. Longevity is another problem, as most conventional roofs have a lifespan of about 30 years.
Musk is still confident that Tesla can meet its goals and offer the most affordable solar roof on the market. He also announced a forthcoming “version three” of the solar roof that he is especially excited for, though no launch date was provided.
Austin Camp Helps Women Enter Trades
The National Association of Women in Construction (NAWIC) is holding a week-long camp in Austin to teach girls helpful skills and expose them to physical trades like building. The guests are middle-school girls who will spend the week building a free library stand. They will build the structure from the ground up and learn that girls have the power to work in construction and become skilled laborers.
With the construction trade facing a shortage of workers, this camp couldn’t have come at a better time. It presents an alternative to low-paying entry level jobs and high student loan debt for college degrees. “There’s just not a lot of talk about what opportunities are out there, and that’s kind of our goal is to show the kids what else there could be,” says Jordan Moore, a plumbing specialist and NAWIC board member.
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