Archive for the ‘Lockout Tagout’ Category

Connecticut: OSHA Hands Out $56K in Fines

February 26, 2014 Leave a comment
Chessire, CT: OSHA has cited Artbeats Inc. for alleged repeat and serious safety violations related to lockout/tagout, electrical safety, and combustible dust and has issued $56,430 in proposed fines.

OSHA announced an enforcement case against Cheshire, Conn.-based Artbeats Inc. for alleged repeat and serious safety violations. The company—which manufactures reproductions and prints of paintings—has been cited for $56,430 in proposed fines. The inspection was completed in early December following a worker complaint.

According to the OSHA news release, the inspection found the facility allegedly at fault for similar hazards the company was cited for in June 2010 at its Waterbury facility. The repeat hazards include alleged failure to provide a program to ensure workers are trained to power down and lock out industrial saws before conducting maintenance, failure to provide a chemical hazard communication program and training on the risks and safeguards associated with chemicals and failure to prevent usage of unapproved electrical equipment in areas that generate combustible wood dust.

The company received eight repeat violations for the above conditions. OSHA also issued one serious violations for an inadequately guarded radial arm saw.

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Ohio: $86K in Fines for Ohio Plant for Safety Violations

February 17, 2014 Leave a comment

Ohio: The U.S. Department of Labor’s Occupational Safety and Health Administration has cited G&J Pepsi-Cola Bottlers Inc. for seven workplace health and safety violations, carrying proposed penalties of $86,900. OSHA initiated an inspection of the Franklin Furnace plant in July 2013 under its Site-Specific Targeting Program, which targets facilities with higher than average illness and injury rates.

“This company consistently failed to protect its workers and implement basic safety requirements,” said Bill Wilkerson, OSHA’s area director in Cincinnati. “Repeat violations demonstrate a lack of commitment to employee safety and health, and that is unacceptable when employee safety is on the line.”

Two repeat safety violations involve failing to ensure that employees utilize appropriate personal protective  equipment when working with electrical sources and implement lockout/tagout procedures to prevent the unintentional startup of equipment during maintenance and servicing, when employees are most at risk.

A repeat violation exists when an employer previously has been cited for the same or a similar violation at any other facility in federal enforcement states within the last five years. The same violations were cited in 2009 at the company’s Hamilton facility.

Five serious safety citations were issued to the company. Two of those violations involved failure to use lockout/tagout procedures. The remaining three included failing to perform hazard assessments related to personal protective equipment, failure to use appropriate protective equipment and failure to perform annual fit testing to ensure employees wore respirators. A serious violation occurs when there is substantial probability that death or serious physical harm could result from a hazard about which the employer knew or should have known.

G&J employs more than 1,600 people at 11 locations in Ohio and Kentucky, including production facilities in Lexington and Winchester, Ky., and in Columbus and Portsmouth, Ohio. G&J has distribution centers in Hamilton, Ripley, Hillsboro, Athens, Chillicothe, and Zanesville and in Harrodsburg, Ky. The company has contested the findings before the independent Occupational Safety & Health Review Commission.

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Iowa: I-OSHA Cites Electrician Company After 5 Workers Hospitalized

February 4, 2014 Leave a comment

Sibley, Iowa — Iowa safety officials have cited a Sibley electrician business for violations that occurred when a flash explosion sent five people to a hospital in July, 2013.

The Iowa Division of Labor Services Occupational Safety and Health Bureau, or I-OSHA says the accident happened when workers were switching over electric lines at Timewell Drainage in Sibley.

Three entities have now been cited, including the City of Sibley Electric Department, Timewell, and now Current Electric of Sibley.

According to the citation, the issue occurred when workers were installing new electrical wiring to an 800 amp interior panel board. They say work was being performed while the wiring was energized and people were allowed in the immediate area without personal protective equipment.  After installation of wiring to the panel board, the employer was confirming that proper function of the equipment had been achieved.  They say lock and tagout was not applied ensuring that the equipment was not energized prior to installation of the panel cover.  They say people were in the immediate area and were exposed to an arc flash and/or arc blast, and life-threatening injuries were sustained.

I-OSHA says that Current Electric should have conducted frequent and regular inspections of job sites, materials, and equipment. They also allege that Current Electric did not instruct each employee in the recognition and avoidance of unsafe conditions and the applicable regulations.

Last fall, Timewell Drainage was cited for not instructing their employees in the recognition and avoidance of unsafe conditions, and for employees not wearing personal protective equipment.

Also last fall, the City of Sibley Electric Department was cited in connection with the incident.  I-OSHA says controls deactivated during the course of work on energized or de-energized equipment or circuits were not tagged on the worksite involving the energizing and deenergizing of a transformer with an incoming line voltage of thousands of volts.

When more than one independent crew requires the same line or equipment to be deenergized, the law requires a prominent tag for each such independent crew to be placed on the line or equipment by a designated employee in charge, and according to I-OSHA, that didn’t happen

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Nevada: MSHA Issues 135 Citations to Mining Company

February 4, 2014 Leave a comment

ELKO, NV — The Mine Safety and Health Administration said Veris Gold failed to protect employees from harm at the company’s Jerritt Canyon Mill, after issuing 61 citations and orders to the site.

The U.S. Department of Labor’s MSHA announced the results of the December inspections Wednesday. The inspectors issued 135 citations, 24 orders and one safeguard during special impact inspections conducted at 11 coal mines and two metal and nonmetal mines.

The two highlighted properties in the inspection report were Jerritt Canyon and Hanover Resources LLC’s Caymus Mine in Boone County, W. Va. Caymus Mine produces coal.

“These two examples clearly indicate that some mine operators still don’t get it,” said Joseph A. Main, assistant secretary of labor for mine safety and health. “They simply failed to comply with the Mine Act and find and fix hazards to protect miners from injury, illness and death.”

Veris Gold said “Jerritt Canyon takes all citations and actions from MSHA seriously and its management has been working with them diligently to review all claims. As of January 16, 2014, all citations and actions have been either acknowledged or met.

“It is important to note that the Jerritt Canyon Operations has an exemplary safety record with no fatalities since it began operating in 1982. Safety is our priority, and we will continue to work with MSHA in order to continue to ensure the safety of all employees.

“Recently, Veris Gold USA initiated a Safety Enhancement Program that is the personal responsibility of Graham Dickson, COO. This program will ensure that all employees remain secure at work and return home safely to their families at the end of the day.”

Jerritt Canyon received 49 citations and 12 orders after its inspection that began on Dec. 16. Veris Gold owns the Jerritt Canyon Mill Complex, which is 50 miles north of Elko and has more than 120 employees. The complex property includes three gold mines: Smith, SSX-Steer and Starvation Canyon.

According to the federal agency, “among the hazardous conditions cited during the inspection, MSHA found that an electrician working in the crusher area had been cleaning and performing maintenance on a 480-volt fully-energized switch gear, and there were spent mercury containers found at the bottom of wet mill stairs rather than being stored in a manner that would protect miners from mercury exposure. Nearly four feet of dirt had accumulated on the left side of a conveyor belt, blocking access to the steps and catwalk used to reach the plant and potentially hindering escape during an emergency.

“Inspectors also found: a chemical container improperly labeled; no warning signs for hazardous chemical storage; several unsecured gas cylinders; no provision for safe access in several locations; missing electrical cover plates on energized outlets; an improperly grounded cable; unlabeled breakers that exposed miners to electrical hazards; a broken ladder and insufficient illumination; failure to conduct workplace exams and air receiver tanks equipped with the wrong size pressure relief valves, creating the potential hazard of an exploding vessel.”

On Dec. 19, while MSHA inspectors were still on site, an electrical explosion and subsequent fire injured two employees in the mill.

The employees were injured after an arc flash and minor fire, said Shaun Heinrichs, chief financial officer for Veris Gold.

“One employee was airlifted with burns and another was taken into Elko with smoke inhalation,” Heinrichs told the Free Press in December. “Our thoughts are with our employees and their families. Safety is our utmost priority.”

Tim Woolever, Nevada Division of Forestry chief for the northern region, responded to the scene to handle the fire. He believed at least one of the men injured was an electrician who was working on a 480-volt panel.

MSHA inspected the Caymus Mine on Dec. 11 and issued 13 violations. The inspection party monitored the mine’s communication system to prevent advance notice of their arrival, and they proceeded to inspect the mine’s two working sections and a large portion of the conveyor belt. MSHA issued seven unwarrantable failure orders and six citations. This was the first impact inspection at this mine.

Since April 2010, MSHA has conducted 700 impact inspections and issued 11,562 citations, 1,076 orders and 49 safeguards.

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OH: LOTO Fines of $293K for Reliable Castings Corp.

January 14, 2014 Leave a comment

Sidney, OH:  The U.S. Department of Labor’s Occupational Safety and Health Administration announced today that it’s cited Reliable Castings Corp. for 14 safety and health violations, carrying proposed penalties of $293,700.

The federal agency said an inspection found workers were exposed to hazards at the Sidney aluminum die castings manufacturing facility.

“OSHA’s inspectors found a facility with multiple hazards and where safety was continually compromised,” said Kim Nelson, OSHA’s area director in Toledo. “Reliable Castings Corporation has a responsibility to train its workers and to implement all required safety procedures.”

One repeat violation was issued for failing to “de-energize an industrial robot and implement lockout/tag out procedures prior to performing servicing and maintenance work on the equipment.”

OSHA said four willful violations involved failing to develop lockout procedures for servicing and changing molds on various production cells, prevent exposure to molten aluminum splash hazards from the melting furnace, inspect chains on a daily basis and prevent use of an unapproved work platform to lift workers with the fork truck. “A willful violation is committed with intentional, knowing or voluntary disregard for the law’s requirement, or plain indifference to employee safety and health,” OSHA said.

Eight serious violations involved failing to install guardrails near ovens and floor openings to prevent fall hazards, perform protective equipment assessments, require the use of face shields and hard hats, ensure adequate guarding on 21 machines in the foundry areas, provide lockout procedures, ensure use of an electrical cabinet is protected from water, label lifting devices with load capacities and provide safety data sheets to workers, OSHA said.

Reliable Castings Corp. is based in Sidney and employs about 140 workers there and about 130 workers at its Cincinnati location.

OSHA said the company has 15 business days from receipt of the citations to comply, request an informal conference with OSHA’s area director, or contest the citations and penalties before the independent Occupational Safety and Health Review Commission.

A spokesman for Reliable Castings could not be reached Thursday.

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NY: OSHA Fines Hunter Panels LLC $123K – Lockout Tagout and Electrical

March 12, 2013 Leave a comment

Kingston, NY: OSHA has cited a manufacturer of roof insulation panels with 23 alleged serious safety violations following an inspection that began in July 2012.  OSHA found several deficiencies in the plant’s process safety management (PSM) program.  The chemical was n-pentane, an organic compound used in the manufacturing process. The cited deficiencies included missing PSI, failing to develop and implement SWP, correct equipment deficiencies, follow up on the findings of compliance audits, address all hazards identified during a PHA, and document the resolution of corrective actions, in the plant’s emergency response, confined space and hazardous energy control programs, lack of personal protective equipment, accumulation of combustible dust, as well as fall and respirator hazards.  Here is a breakdown of the citations…

Combustible Dust

  • 1910.22(a)(1) – Combustible Dusts on structures and surfaces (Serious; $5K)

Process Safety Information

  • 1910.119(d)(1)(v) – no corrosivity data on the metallic Type 321 SS hoses used in the process (Serious; $7K)

Process Hazard Analysis

  • 1910.119(e)(3)(i) – The PHA did not address the hazards of a combustible dust deflagration, a release of pentane due to the failure of the SS braided hoses, the CUNO filter plugging at the pentane pump. (Serious; $7K)
  • 1910.119(e)(5) – No system to track 2007 and 2012 PHA recommendations to closure, items were not closed in a timely manner, the resolutions were not documented, and did not communicate the actions to operating, maintenance and other employees who work assignments were in the process. (Serious; $5K)

Operating Procedures

  • 1910.119(f)(4) – No line break procedure and no LOTO and CS Entry procedures to address the isolation of pentane lines during maintenance of a laminator. (Serious; $7K)

Mechanical Integrity

  • 1910.119(j)(2) – No maintenance procedures to maintain the on-going integrity of pentane piping systems, including corrosion under insulation (CUI) inspection procedures. (Serious; $7K)
  • 1910.119(j)(4) – the frequency of inspections and tests of the Type 321 SS Flexible Metallic hose was not determined.  (Serious; $0)
  • 1910.119(j)(5) – did not correct deficiencies in the steel piping to and from the CUNO pentane filter was not painted in accordance with design specification, NFPA-30, or other methods to provide similar protection from corrosion.  (Serious; $7K)

Management of Change

  • 1910.119(l)(1) – Hazards were not evaluated through an MOC for the addition of the CUNO Auto-Klean Model EG Filter at the pentane transfer pump.  (Serious; $7K)

Compliance Audit

  • 1910.119(o(4) – did not document closures from the 2007 and 2009 audits.(Serious; $7K)

Emergency Response

  • 1910.120(q)2)(iii) – the emergency response plan did not define the types of releases and emergencies that could potentially require an emergency response vs. incidental releases.  (Serious; $5K)
  • 1910.120(q)2)(iv) – the emergency response plan identified only one location as an assembly area; alternative areas were not considered.  (Serious; $0)
  • 1910.120(q)(8)(i) – The safety manager, acting as the emergency coordinator, did not have annual refresher training. (Serious; $5K)

Personal Protective Equipment

  • 1910.133(a)(1) – personnel were not wearing goggles to protect against dripping grease and dust while lubricating the Laminator. (Serious; $3K)
  • 1910.134(c)(1) – No written respiratory protection program for required respirator use.  Employees were required to use 3M 8210 disposable N95 respirators for certain jobs.  (Serious; $5K)
  • 1910.134(e)(1) – No medical evaluations to determine employee’s ability to use a respirator. (Serious; $0)
  • 1910.134(k)(3) – No respirator training. (Serious; $0)
  • 1910.138(b) – Wearing improper gloves while opening chemical pumps to remove and clean out filters. (Serious; $6K)
  • 1910.134(d)(1)(iii) – employer did not identify and evaluate the respiratory hazards in the workplace, including a reasonable estimate of employee exposures to respiratory hazards and identification of the contaminants chemical state and physical form. (Other-than-Serious; $0)

Permit-Required Confined Spaces

  • 1910.146(d)(3)(i) – did not develop and implement the means, procedures, and practices necessary for safe permit space entry operations, including specifying acceptable entry conditions, such as: the speed of the conveyor, the temperature in the laminator, and the level of pentane.  (Serious; $5K)
  • 1910.146(d)(5)(i) – did not test conditions in the permit spa e to determine if acceptable entry condition existed before entry was authorized. (Serious; $0)
  • 1910.146(f)(9) – entry permit did not identify the acceptable entry conditions. (Serious; $0)
  • 1910.146(d)(9) – no procedures for summoning rescue and emergency services to rescue employees and for preventing unauthorized personnel from attempting a rescue. (Serious; $5K)
  • 1910.146(j)(4) – entry supervisors did not verify that entry supervisor(s) verified that rescue services were available and that the means for summoning them were operable.  (Serious; $0)
  • 1910.146(k)(1)(i) – did not evaluate a prospective rescuer’s ability to respond a rescue summons in a timely manner, considering the hazard(s) identified.  The facility stated they would use “911”. (Serious; $0)
  • 1910.146(k)(1)(ii) – did not evaluate a prospective rescuer’s ability in terms of proficiency with rescue-related tasks and equipment, to function appropriately while rescuing entrants.  The facility stated they would use “911”. (Serious; $0)
  • 1910.146(d)(3)(iii) – did not develop and implement the means, procedures, and practices necessary for safe permit space entry operations, including isolating the permit space.  (Serious; $5K)
  • 1910.146(f)(7) – entry permit did not identify the hazards of the permit space to be entered.  (Serious; $0)
  • 1910.146(g)(1) – entry supervisor that supervising an entry did not receive adequate training about the control of hazards due to the employer having an inadequate procedure for entry.  (Serious; $5K)
  • 1910.146(f)(3) – an entry permit had the incorrect date of entry (Other-than-Serious; $0)

LOTO (Lockout Tagout)

  • 1910.147(c)(4)(i) – no machine specific LOTO procedures for entry into the laminator and no procedures for line breaks. (Serious; $5K)
  • 1910.147(c)(7)(i)(A) – authorized personnel did not receive training in the recognition of applicable hazardous energy sources, the type and magnitude of energy available in the workplace and the methods and means necessary for energy isolation and control.  (Serious; $5K)


  • 1910.303(b)(2) – a two-receptacle 120V metallic outlet box was used on the end of a flexible cord to provide electricity to a fluorescent lamp during a PRCS entry.  The box was designed to be wall mounted instead of being placed on the floor. (Serious; $3K)
  • 1910/305(g)(2)(iii) – a flexible cord attached to a fluorescent light was not provided with strain relief in that the outer shielding had separated from the light.  (Serious; $3K)

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OSHA: Fines Totaling $228,900 – Logout Tagout Included

March 12, 2013 Leave a comment

OSHA has cited a facility that produces retail frozen pizzas, retail dressings and sauces, and food service dressings and sauces with 27 health and safety violations, including two repeat, for inadequate hazardous energy control procedures after an August 2012 inspection at the company’s facility was opened under OSHA’s Site Specific Targeting Program for industries with high injury and illness rates. Proposed fines total $228,900.  Because of the hazards and the violations cited, the company has been placed in OSHA’s Severe Violator Enforcement Program.  The two repeat violations were cited for failing to control hazardous energy, including conducting periodic inspections of energy control procedures and providing required information on written energy control procedures, such as specific rules and techniques, as well as testing requirements to determine the effectiveness of the energy control procedures. A total of 24 serious safety and health violations were cited for failing to guard machines, monitor noise exposure levels, train workers on emergency response and hazardous chemicals, provide permit confined space requirements and provide lockout/tagout procedures for the control of hazardous energy. Violations were also cited for OSHA’s process safety management standard, including failing to document inspections, tests and system designs.  An other-than-serious violation was cited for failing to annually certify process safety management standard operating procedures. Here is a breakdown of the citations…

Fixed Stairs

  • 1910.24(b) – fixed industrial stairs were not provided for access to the roof for daily inspections and routine maintenance of ammonia refrigeration equipment (See my 2012 article discussing access/egress from rooftop refrigeration equipment); Serious; $7K

Process Safety Information

  • 1910.119(d)(3)(i)(D) – no relief system design and design basis for the ammonia refrigeration system in regards to the header and vent lines, oil pots, and HPR and LPR. Serious; $5,500
  • 1910.119(d)(3)(i)(E) – no ventilation design basis for two (2) engine rooms. Serious; $5,500
  • 1910.119(d)(3)(ii) – no documentation that the equipment complies with RAGAGEP(s): 1) a PSV from engine room #2 discharged at a working platform on a condenser, 2) PSVs were not replaced every five (5) years, nor was there an alternative replacement frequency based on in-service RV life. Serious; $5,500

Process Hazards Analysis

  • 1910.119(e)(5) – no system established to promptly address recommendations from a 2009 PHA which included: 1) develop policy/procedure for addressing RVs every five (5) years, 2) developing a policy/procedure for documentation of PM inspections/tests, 3) ensure RVs are relieving to safe locations, 4) address additional roof access and egress. Serious; $5,500

Operating Procedures

  • 1910.119(f)(1)(i)(B) – No SOP for draining oil from oil pots. Serious; $5,500

Mechanical Integrity

  • 1910.119(j)(2) – No written MI procedures for: 1) inspection of uninsulated NH3 piping, 2) corrosion under insulation inspections for NH3 piping, 3) testing of all safety cutouts on the compressors, 4) interior inspection of reciprocating compressors. Serious; $5,500
  • 1910.119(j)(4)(iv) – No documentation for each inspection/test that had been performed on NH3 system including: 1) testing of high pressure cutouts on recip compressors, 2) testing of high temp cutouts on recip compressors, 3) annual interior inspection of recip compressors. Serious; $5,500

3-year Audits

  • 1910.119(o)(1) – no 3- year audit done. Serious; $5,500

Emergency Response

  • 1910.120(q)(2) – the ERP did not address a response to Nitrogen. Serious; $7K

PPE (Fall Protection)

  • 1910.132(a) – no fall protection for workers were 20′ climbing the frame work while unjamming conveyors in spiral freezers. Serious; $7K

Permit Required Confined Spaces (Spiral Freezers)

  • 1910.146(c)(1) – No confined space evaluation on spiral freezers. Serious; $7K
  • 1910.146(c)(4) – No Confined Space entry procedures for the spiral freezers. Serious; $7K
  • 1910.146(d)(3)(iii) – no isolation procedures and practices necessary to isolate the spiral freezers from the Nitrogen system and mechanical hazards of the conveyor chains. Serious; $7K
  • 1910.146(d)(3)(iv) – No procedures for ventilation of Nitrogen inside the spiral freezers. Serious; $7K
  • 1910.146(d)(3)(vi) – No procedures to verify that conditions in the spiral freezers were acceptable for entry throughout the duration of an authorized entry. Serious; $0
  • 1910.146(d)(4)(i) – Employer did not maintain the hand-held oxygen meter properly and did not ensure that employees used the equipment properly when entering PRCS’s. Serious; $0
  • 1910.146(d)(5) – Employer did not evaluate the atmosphere prior to and during entry into the spiral freezers when entry operations were conducted. Serious; $0
  • 1910.146(d)(4)(vii) – employer did not provide equipment for safe ingress or egress by entrants into spiral freezers. Serious; $5,500
  • 1910.146(d)(9) – no procedures for summoning rescue and emergency services for rescuing entrants from PRCSs, for providing necessary emergency services to rescued employees and for preventing unauthorized personnel from attempting rescue in spiral freezers. Serious; $7K
  • 1910.146(e)(1) – Entry permits were not issued for entry by sanitation and maintenance employees into the spiral freezers. Serious; $7K
  • 1910.146(g)(1) – no training for employees whose work required entry into spiral freezers. Serious; $7K


  • 1910.147(d)(3) – employer did not operate all energy isolating devices needed to control the energy to equipment, specifically electrical circuit breakers for conveyor chains for two spiral freezers. Serious; $0
  • 1910.147(d)(4)(i) – LOTO devices were not affixed to each energy isolating device by authorized employees. Serious; $0
  • 1910.147(c)(4)(ii) – LOTO procedures did not contain: 1) specific procedural steps for shutting down, isolating, blocking and securing machines or equipment to control hazardous energy; 2) specific requirement for testing a machine or equipment to determine and verify the effectiveness of LOTO devices and other energy control measures. REPEAT; $38,500
  • 1910.147(c)(6)(i) – no periodic inspection of energy control procedures at least annually. REPEAT; $38,500
  • 1910.119(f)(3) – SOPs not annually certified. Other-than-Serious; $0

Fire Extinguishers

  • 1910.157(g)(4) – employees designated to use firefighting equipment as part of the EAP were not provided training in the use of appropriate equipment upon initial assignment and annually thereafter. Serious; $4,400

Machine Guarding

  • 1910.212(a)(1) – pepperoni slicer not guarded. Serious; $7K


  • 1910.1200(h)(1) – no training on Nitrogen hazards. Serious; $7K

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MN: Verso Fined $39K for Lockout Tagout Violations

January 3, 2013 Leave a comment

SARTELL, MN: The Minnesota Occupational Safety and Health Administration has closed its investigation into the explosion and fire at the Verso Paper Mill.

OSHA cited Verso for two serious citations.  They were fined a total of $39,200, which the company did not contest and paid.

James Honerman is the Communications Director for the Minnesota Department of Labor and Industry.  He says the first violation was for failing to ensure specific “lockout/tagout procedures”.

An overheated compressor led to the explosion and fire.

Plant employees, doing routine maintenance, shut down a well that provided water to cool the plant’s compressors on the day of the accident.

The explosion and fire on Memorial Day killed Jon Maus, and injured four other workers.

The company announced in August it would not reopen the mill.

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NY: OSHA Fines Rosina Food Products over $54K; Lockout / Tagout Violations

January 3, 2013 Leave a comment

BUFFALO, N.Y. — The U.S. Department of Labor’s Occupational Safety and Health Administration has cited Rosina Food Products Inc. with nine serious violations of workplace safety standards at its West Seneca production facility. The manufacturer of frozen food products faces a proposed penalty of $54,750.

The inspection, which began in September, identified several deficiencies in the plant’s process safety management program, a detailed set of requirements and procedures employers must follow to proactively address hazards associated with processes and equipment involving large amounts of hazardous chemicals. In this case, the process is the operation and maintenance of the plant’s refrigeration system and the chemical is anhydrous ammonia, used in the refrigeration system.

‘The stringent and comprehensive requirements of OSHA’s process safety management standard are designed to prevent catastrophic incidents, such as the uncontrolled release of highly hazardous chemicals, including ammonia,’ said Arthur Dube, OSHA’s area director for western New York. ‘This requires full, effective and proactive adherence to the standard’s requirements by the employer.’

In this case, OSHA’s Buffalo Area Office found that the plant lacked effective standard operating procedures for all emergency shutdown procedures of the refrigeration system, necessary corrective actions identified during hazard analyses of the refrigeration process, clear instructions for safely conducting refrigeration procedures, written procedures to maintain the ongoing mechanical integrity of all equipment used in the refrigeration process, and procedures for handling small releases of anhydrous ammonia. In addition, the inspection found that all required safety testing was not performed. The plant did not develop specific procedures for locking out machines to prevent their unintended startup during servicing, did not inspect such procedures, and did not use group lockout/tagout procedures as required. A serious violation occurs when there is substantial probability that death or serious physical harm could result from a hazard about which the employer knew or should have known.

‘One method of enhancing workers’ safety is developing and maintaining an effective illness and injury prevention program in which management and employees work together to identify and prevent hazardous conditions,’ said Robert Kulick, OSHA’s regional administrator in New York.

The company has 15 business days from receipt of its citations and proposed penalties to comply, meet with OSHA’s area director or contest the findings to the independent Occupational Safety and Health Review Commission.

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OH: Timkin Fined over $170K; Electrical Safety Fines Included

January 2, 2013 Leave a comment

Canton, OH:   The U.S. Department of Labor’s Occupational Safety and Health Administration has cited Timken Co. for 12 alleged safety violations, including five repeat, after conducting a complaint inspection in June at the steel mill in Canton which manufactures roller bearings. Proposed penalties total $170,500.

“Timken Co. has a responsibility to recognize safety hazards in its facility and to train workers in emergency response,” said Howard Eberts, OSHA’s area director in Cleveland. “When employers knowingly ignore safety and health requirements, they are unduly placing their workers at risk for illnesses and injuries, and that is unacceptable.”

Five repeat safety violations involve failing to machine guard ingoing nip points, points of operation and rotating parts. Additionally, the company lacked guardrails on elevated platforms and failed to ensure electrical boxes with unused openings were closed. A repeat violation exists when an employer previously has been cited for the same or a similar violation of a standard, regulation, rule or order at any other facility in federal enforcement states within the last five years. Similar violations were cited at other Timken Co. facilities in Canton, including the Harrison steel plant in 2007 and 2011, and the Gambrinus roller bearing plant in 2007 and 2009.

Seven serious safety violations involve failing to reduce compressed air for cleaning to 30 pounds per square inch or below; maintain floors in dry condition; conduct annual training for workers designated to use portable fire extinguishers; provide an emergency eyewashing station; ensure each authorized worker affixed a personal lockout / tagout  device to a group lock box to prevent the unintentional release of hazardous energy; and properly adjust machine guarding. A serious violation occurs when there is substantial probability that death or serious physical harm could result from a hazard about which the employer knew or should have known.

The current citations can be viewed at:….

In total, Timken Co. has been cited by OSHA for 27 violations as the result of 16 previous inspections conducted since 2007. The company has 15 business days from receipt of the citations to comply, request an informal conference with OSHA’s area director, or contest the citations and penalties before the independent Occupational Safety and Health Review Commission.

The Canton, Ohio-based company engineers, manufactures and markets mechanical components and high-performance steel, such as bearings, engineered steel bars and tubes, and transmissions and gearboxes. About 300 workers are employed at the Canton facility; corporate-wide the company operates in 30 countries and employs about 21,000 workers.

To ask questions, obtain compliance assistance, file a complaint, or report workplace hospitalizations, fatalities or situations posing imminent danger to workers, the public should call OSHA’s toll-free hotline at 800-321-OSHA (6742) or the agency’s Cleveland Area Office at 216-615-4266.

Under the Occupational Safety and Health Act of 1970, employers are responsible for providing safe and healthful workplaces for their employees. OSHA’s role is to ensure these conditions for America’s working men and women by setting and enforcing standards, and providing training, education and assistance.

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