Whether your HOA or condo development has a full-time maintenance staff, a few supers or maintenance people, or just occasional contractors, those workers are covered by federal Occupational Safety and Health Administration, or OSHA, guidelines. If there are safety problems on the site or one of them is injured, OSHA regulations can come into play.
Even if your complex a great preventative maintenance program, you never know what will happen. Dan Braverman, a Manhattan labor lawyer who has represented employers on OSHA-related cases in both New Jersey and New York, remembers one case where a maintenance man in a high-rise building backed into what he though was an elevator.
The elevator wasn't there, however—only an empty shaft. Unfortunately, the worker fell and died. Of course, such a condition is a violation, a complaint was made to OSHA, and the building owner was fined, Braverman recalls.
What is OSHA?
Obviously, it's helpful for a condo or co-op board or management to know at least the basics of OSHA regulations.
The Occupational Safety and Health Administration was created in 1971, a year after then-President Richard Nixon signed the Occupational Safety and Health Act, also known as the Williams-Steiger Act.