Safety In the News
Than $114,000 For Lack of Fall Protection, Other Hazards 4/21/2006
Region 4 News Release: 06-279-ATL (27)
Date: Tuesday, February 21, 2006
Contact: Roberto Sanchez Jo Anne Burgoyne
Phone: (205) 731-1534 (404) 562-2076
OSHA Proposes $236,000 in Penalties Following Enhanced Enforcement Inspection at Birmingham Foundry
BIRMINGHAM, Ala. — The U.S. Labor Department’s Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) has cited United States Pipe and Foundry and proposed penalties totaling $236,000 following an August 2005 “enhanced enforcement” inspection conducted at the company’s 30th Ave. N. plant in Birmingham.
“Despite OSHA’s enforcement and outreach efforts, this company has continued to disregard their basic obligation under the Occupational Safety and Health Act,” said Roberto Sanchez, OSHA’s Birmingham area director.
OSHA’s enhanced enforcement policy focuses on employers who receive “high gravity” citations for violations at the highest level of severity. Under the policy, announced in 2003, OSHA may conduct inspections at employer worksites other than the one where the original high gravity citations were issued and may seek a variety of remedies including federal court enforcement of citations.
Sanchez explained that OSHA cited United States Pipe and Foundry following an investigation of a fatal accident in 2004 at the company’s Bessemer facility. A missing safety latch on an overhead crane directly contributed to that accident. During the enhanced enforcement inspection at the Birmingham facility, OSHA found a similar hazard and issued a repeat citation, with a proposed penalty of $25,000, for lack of a safety latch on an overhead crane.
OSHA issued an additional eight repeat citations, with proposed penalties totaling $152,500, for lack of eye wash facilities; unguarded floor openings; confined space and electrical hazards; lack of machinery guards, and improper storage of compressed gas cylinders.
The company, a subsidiary of Walters Industries, also received 19 serious citations, with proposed penalties totaling $58,500, for alleged safety and health hazards that exposed workers to falls, amputations, electrocutions, hearing loss, eye injuries and respiratory illnesses.
The company has 15 days to contest the citations and proposed penalties before the independent Occupational Safety and Health Review Commission. Staff from the Birmingham OSHA office located at 950 22nd St. N., Suite 1050, conducted the inspection; phone: (205) 731-1534.
Employers are responsible for providing a safe and healthful workplace for their employees. OSHA’s role is to assure the safety and health of America’s workers by setting and enforcing standards; providing training, outreach, and education; establishing partnerships; and encouraging continual improvement in workplace safety and health.
Feb. 5, 2004
Contact: Ted Fitzgerald
Phone: (617) 565-2074
OSHA Fines Stanadyne For Wide Range Of Safety and Health Hazards Inspection Resulted from Targeted Enforcement Program
HARTFORD, Conn. — The U.S. Labor Department’s Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) has cited a Windsor, Conn. manufacturer of automotive engine components for a wide variety of safety and health hazards at its Deerfield Rd. manufacturing plant. Stanadyne Corp. faces significant fines for 52 alleged serious violations of the Occupational Safety and Health Act. The fines and citations follow safety and health inspections conducted under OSHA’s Site Specific Targeting Program, which focuses inspections on workplaces with higher than average illness and injury rates. U.S. Labor Secretary Elaine L. Chao said, “The proposed fines of $143,650 reflect the breadth and variety of the hazards found in this inspection and the Labor Department’s commitment to strong, fair and effective enforcement to protect America’s workers.” The safety inspection identified numerous instances of unguarded machinery, including woodworking equipment, mechanical power presses, belts, pulleys, gears and saws; lack of fall protection; electrical violations; improper storage of compressed gas cylinders; no annual training on using fire extinguishers to fight incipient stage fires; uninspected slings; failure to evaluate the performance of forklift operators; and failing to determine a forklift’s lifting capacity after it had been altered. A total of $64,150 in fines is proposed. The health inspection addressed deficiencies in the company’s hearing conservation program, process safety management, respiratory protection program, confined space entry program, hazardous waste operations, and chemical hygiene program; inadequate precautions to protect employees against lead and blood borne pathogen hazards; and failure to supply workers with required personal protective equipment. These items account for $79,500 of the proposed fines. OSHA defines a serious violation as one in which there is substantial probability that death or serious physical harm could result, and the employer knew, or should have known, of the hazard. Stanadyne Corp. has 15 business days from receipt of its citations and proposed penalties to either elect to comply with them, to request and participate in an informal conference with the OSHA area director, or to contest them before the independent Occupational Safety and Health Review Commission. The inspection was conducted by the OSHA’s Hartford area office. The telephone number is (860) 240-3152. The Occupational Safety and Health Administration is dedicated to saving lives, preventing injuries and illnesses, and protecting America’s workers. In fiscal year 2003, OSHA conducted almost 40,000 inspections, with more than half focused on high-hazard industries.
April 8, 2003
Contact: Ted Fitzgerald
Phone: (617) 565-2074
OSHA Cites Buffalo Nursing Home For Alleged Violations Of Safety And Health Standards
BUFFALO, N.Y. — A Buffalo nursing home’s failure to adequately protect its workers against bloodborne pathogens, falls, and other hazards has resulted in $62,200 in proposed fines from the U.S. Labor Department’s Occupational Safety and Health Administration.
Ridge View Manor, a Zacher Healthcare facility, of 300 Dorrance Ave., was cited for alleged repeat and serious violations of the Occupational Safety and Health Act following an inspection conducted under OSHA’s national emphasis program for nursing and personal care facilities. Ridge View Manor is the fifth Zacher Healthcare facility to be inspected by OSHA in the Buffalo area; the third since 2002.
The bulk of the fines, $52,700, are proposed for six alleged “repeat” violations. The violations include failure to provide specific “lockout/tagout” procedures and training for maintenance workers to prevent the start-up of machinery undergoing repairs or maintenance; not having a fall protection program and training for employees exposed to falls while performing maintenance work on the facility’s roof; no eye protection for employees working with corrosive cleaners; improper storage of sharps containers; an incomplete blood borne pathogen training program and incomplete records for same.
The citations were classified as repeat because OSHA cited Zacher Healthcare’s facility in Hamburg, N.Y., for substantially similar hazards in July.
“An employer must provide and ensure required safeguards for its workers at all of its facilities,” said Art Dube, OSHA’s Buffalo area director. “There can be no exceptions, especially in an industry that ranks high in injuries and illnesses.”
Ridge View Manor was also cited for four alleged serious violations, with $9,500 in proposed fines, for improper storage of compressed gas cylinders; no post vaccine follow-ups for employees; failure to supply the Hepatitis B vaccine in a timely manner; and failure to provide initial and annual bloodborne pathogen training. OSHA defines a serious violation as one in which there us a substantial probability that death or serious physical harm could result from a hazardous condition about which the employer knew or should have known.
Ridge View Manor has 15 business days from receipt of its citations and proposed penalties to either elect to comply with them, to request and participate in an informal conference with the OSHA area director, or to contest them before the independent Occupational Safety and Health Review Commission.
OSHA’s Buffalo area office at 5360 Genesee St., Bowmansville, NY, conducted the investigation. The telephone number is (716) 684-3891. The Occupational Safety and Health Administration is dedicated to saving lives, preventing injuries and illnesses, and protecting America’s workers. Safety and health add value to business, the workplace and life.