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Labor Secretary, Hilda Solis, is taking a good hard look at Texas’ safety record as it relates to working conditions here in the Lone Star State. The Labor Department is looking at several deadly incidents, one of which happened last June in Austin, Texas and took three lives. The lives lost in that deadly scaffolding collapse were just a drop in the bloody bucket of all construction deaths that occur in Texas. Indeed, Texas has more per capita construction deaths than any other state.

The good news is that the Department of Labor and the Occupational Safety and Health Administration are getting serious about enforcement. OSHA enforcement peaked this summer in Dallas so hopefully Texas employers, and especially, construction companies, will start taking the safety of their employees more seriously. OSHA will go from “coach to cop” said Raleigh Roussell, president of TEXO, an association of North Texas builders. I was under the impression that being a cop was OSHA’s mission, it looks like under Secretary Solis, they’re back to following their mission statement.

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