NRCA intensified its efforts to ensure sensible workplace safety policies for the roofing industry by testifying Oct. 5 before Congress regarding the Occupational Safety and Health Administration's (OSHA's) new fall-protection rules. Pete Korellis, president and owner of NRCA member company Korellis Roofing, Hammond, Ind., testified on behalf of NRCA at a hearing held by the Workforce Protections Subcommittee of the House of Representatives.
Pete Korellis, president and owner of NRCA member company Korellis Roofing, Hammond, Ind., testifies on behalf of NRCA at a hearing held by the Workforce Protections Subcommittee of the House of Representatives.
Korellis outlined NRCA's numerous concerns with OSHA's fall-protection directive, which was issued in late 2010 and took effect Sept. 16. The directive effectively eliminates the use of slide guards as a fall-protection option in residential roofing.
Korellis addressed the subcommittee members: "I am here today, Mr. Chairman, because I have deep concerns that new rules issued by OSHA will put my workers at greater risk of injury and also make it much more difficult for me to operate my company."
Korellis urged Congress to seek a legislative remedy if OSHA remains unwilling to work with NRCA to resolve issues of concern to roofing contractors.
NRCA has been working for several years to communicate to OSHA that the agency's regulatory action will hinder rather than improve workplace safety and also will cause widespread disruption within the residential roofing industry. Unfortunately, agency officials so far have failed to adequately address industry concerns. NRCA has urged OSHA officials to delay enforcement of the directive while it works with the roofing industry to resolve roofing contractors' many concerns. NRCA has reviewed new guidance documents recently issued by OSHA that are intended to help contractors comply with the new rules but finds the advice impractical and wholly inadequate.
NRCA commends Rep. Tim Walberg (R-Mich.), chairman of the Workforce Protections Subcommittee, for convening the hearing and for his continued efforts to convey the roofing industry's concerns to agency officials. NRCA also commends Rep. Reid Ribble (R-Wis.) and Rep. Todd Rokita (R-Ind.) for their supportive comments during the hearing.
Korellis (left) with Tim Walberg (R-Mich.), chairman of the Workforce Protections Subcommittee
To view Korellis' hearing statement on behalf of NRCA, click here.
More information regarding the hearing can be viewed on the House Committee on Education and the Workforce website by clicking here.