Death leads to edict: Facility must mitigate the risk of falls — on its roof

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The Occupational Safety and Health Administration has given a skilled nursing facility in Ohio until Friday to remedy roof safety issues after a telecommunications worker fell to his death.

The government agency opened an investigation in October, after the 30-year veteran fell off the roof at Bethany Village in Dayton and died, according to the Dayton Daily News.

Hazards that contributed to the fall were identified in a letter from OSHA's Cincinnati Area Director, Ken Montgomery, to Bethany's owner, Graceworks Lutheran Services. According to the newspaper report, maintenance employees and sub-contractors “performing work and/or walking to gain access to work area on or near the edge of the low slope pitch roof without a fall protection system were exposed to trip and fall hazards.”

The letter detailed voluntary steps Graceworks could take to eliminate or reduce future risk.

OSHA responded to the scene on Oct. 11 after Mark French, 54, fell. The agency later cleared French's company of any wrongdoing in the accident.

In a statement emailed to McKnight's Thursday morning, Graceworks Lutheran Services said it "is committed to employee safety.  We proactively take steps to reduce exposure to trip and fall hazards on our campus. Graceworks is fully collaborating with all authorities, including the Cincinnati OSHA Office. We do not expect OSHA to issue any citations."