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Maine contractor facing more federal fines for workplace violations

The new penalties against the Saco-based roofing contractor total more than a quarter million dollars.

MAINE, USA — The U.S. Department of Labor’s Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) says it has cited Shawn Purvis - owner of Purvis Home Improvement Co. Inc. - yet again.

The Saco-based roofing contractor faces a total of $278,456 in new penalties stemming from what OSHA says were "willful, repeat and serious workplace safety violations" at a job site in Springvale.

OSHA originally conducted an inspection of Purvis in May, after receiving a complaint. They say they issued Purvis citations for multiple violations, including allowing employees to work on a two-story residence without fall protection and for allowing employees to work on scaffolds near energized power lines. The Administration also cited Purvis for allowing employees to use ladders with side rails that did not extend at least three feet above upper work surfaces.

“OSHA regulations require that employees working at heights wear fall protection,” said Principal Deputy Assistant Secretary of Labor for Occupational Safety and Health Loren Sweatt. “This employer’s ongoing defiance of the law continues to place his workers at risk for disabling and fatal injuries.”

OSHA says it has inspected and cited Purvis Home Improvement Co. Inc. for safety violations seven times in the past seven years. In June, the company was fined over $1.7 million following an employee's fatal fall in Portland. A grand jury indicted Purvis for manslaughter and workplace manslaughter in April, charging that his repeated violations of OSHA’s fall protection standards caused a worker fatality. 

According to the Portland Press Herald, Purvis said he always provides the safety gear at his job sites and encourages his roofers to use it. 

Purvis now has 15 business days to comply with the new penalties, request a conference with OSHA, or contest its findings.

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