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NE: Nebraska Beef Fined $61,084: Electrical Safety

OMAHA, Neb. – The U.S. Department of Labor’s Occupational Safety and Health Administration has cited Nebraska Beef Ltd. with eight safety violations, including one repeat, for failing to guard open stairs and platforms to prevent a fall hazard at its Omaha beef processing plant. Proposed penalties of $61,084 resulted from the November local emphasis program inspection for high-hazard general industry establishments, as identified by injury and illness rates in Nebraska.

“Nebraska Beef has a responsibility to recognize the hazards that exist in the workplace and to install barriers, signage and make appropriate repairs to ensure a safe working environment,” said Bonita Winingham, OSHA’s area director in Omaha. “Employers who are cited for repeat violations demonstrate a lack of commitment to employee safety and health.”

The repeat violation was cited for failing to provide standard railings and toe boards on open-sided floors and platforms 4 feet or above an adjacent floor or ground level. This violation was noted on a crossover platform in the scale room. 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. A similar violation was cited in 2011.

Seven serious violations were cited for failing to post warning signs indicating permit required confined spaces, use lockout/tagout devices for purposes other than controlling energy sources, and provide an eyewash station and a clear path to safety showers for employees exposed to corrosive chemicals, such as bleach, and properly adjust machine guarding. Three of the violations involve electrical safety standards, including operating machinery with visible electrical hazards, such as broken wires and damaged junction boxes, and failing to cover outlet boxes and use permanent wiring instead of flexible electrical cords. 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.

Nebraska Beef has been inspected 12 times since 1998, resulting in several citations for violations, such as lack of fall protection, inadequate machine guarding and electrical safety hazards. The company has 15 days from receipt of the citation and proposed penalties to comply, request an informal conference with OSHA’s area director or contest the findings before the independent Occupational Safety and Health Review Commission.

Story via osha.gov

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NE: Darling International Fined $91,300; Electrical Hazards

LEXINGTON, NE:  The U.S. Department of Labor’s Occupational Safety and Health Administration has cited Darling International Inc., which operates as DarPro in Lexington, with six safety violations, including one repeat, for failing to properly adjust or provide adequate machine guarding at its food byproducts processing facility. Proposed penalties of $91,300 resulted from the January local emphasis program inspection for high-hazard general industry establishments, as identified by injury and illness rates in Nebraska.

“DarPro has a responsibility to recognize the hazards that exist in the workplace and ensure equipment is properly adjusted and maintained,” said Bonita Winingham, OSHA’s area director in Omaha. “Employers who are cited for repeat violations demonstrate a lack of commitment to employee safety and health.”

The repeat violation was issued for failing to properly adjust work rest and tongue guards on grinding machinery in the company’s maintenance shop. Improperly adjusted guards can expose workers to amputations and other hazards. 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. A similar violation was cited in 2010 at the Atlantic, Mo., facility.

A total of four serious violations were cited, including failing to maintain bench grinders and improper storage of oxygen cylinders. The other two involve electrical safe work practices, including improperly marked circuit breakers and not effectively closing unused openings in electrical boxes. 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 other-than-serious citation was issued for failing to mark storage areas with approved load capacity limits. An other-than-serious violation is one that has a direct relationship to job safety and health, but probably would not cause death or serious physical harm.

Darling International, headquartered in Irving, Texas, recycles used restaurant cooking oil and byproducts from the beef, pork and poultry processing industries into usable products.

Inspected by OSHA 22 times at various sites since 2005, Darling International has received several citations for violations, such as lack of fall protection, inadequate machine guarding and electrical safety hazards. The company has 15 days from receipt of the citations and proposed penalties to comply, request an informal conference with OSHA’s area director or contest the findings before the independent Occupational Safety and Health Review Commission.

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 Omaha Area Office at 402-553-0171.

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. For more information, visit http://www.osha.gov.

Story via osha.gov

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NJ: Brite Services fined $164,700; Electrical Hazards

PATERSON, N.J. – The U.S. Department of Labor’s Occupational Safety and Health Administration has cited Brite Services Inc., doing business as Star Laundry, for 39 serious safety and health violations found at its commercial laundry facility in Paterson. Inspectors were prompted by a complaint alleging the company would not allow workers to leave the building during an emergency. Proposed penalties total $164,700.

OSHA found electrical hazards and an obstructed and improperly marked exit route. Additional violations include: allowing employees to potentially be struck by traffic while transporting laundry bins from one building to another while crossing a public street; failing to provide a cover and guardrails for open pits; provide a handrail for the stairway; evaluate the workplace for permit-required confined spaces; post signs informing workers of confined spaces; and develop a written confined space permit program. Other violations include failing to establish an energy control program for performing maintenance/servicing work; train power industrial truck operators; take powered industrial trucks in need of repair out-of-service; insulate or cover steam pipes less than 7 feet from the floor; properly guard machines; implement a hearing conservation program for workers exposed to noise levels at 88 and 89 decibels; ensure safety goggle usage; provide an unblocked eyewash station; develop a written hazard communication program; and provide hazard communication training.

“The vast number and range of safety and health hazards observed by OSHA at this facility indicates the lack of a functioning safety and health management system,” said Lisa Levy, director of OSHA’s area office in Hasbrouck Heights. “Each employer is responsible for ensuring a safe and healthful work environment, which Brite Services did not do. This company has the opportunity now to educate itself, correct these hazards and protect its workers.”

The citations can be viewed at http://www.osha.gov/ooc/citations/briteservices_641138and658718_0314_13.pdf*.

Brite Services Inc. has 15 business days from receipt of the citations to comply, request an informal conference with the OSHA area director in Hasbrouck Heights, or contest the citations and proposed penalties before the independent Occupational Safety and Health Review Commission.

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 Hasbrouck Heights Area Office at 201-288-1700.

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.

Story via osha.gov

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FL: Employers Responsible for Electrocutions

March 12, 2013 Leave a comment

Fort Meyers Beach, FL: About five months after the deaths of two maintenance workers on Fort Myers Beach, their employers have received safety citations that could cost them thousands of dollars.

Juan Bocanegra, 37, of Fort Myers, and Dustin Manning, 30, of Bradenton, were electrocuted in September when the basket of a cherry picker they were standing in struck a power line. The men were hired to remove molding damaged by woodpeckers at Bella Lago condos, off Bay Beach Road on Fort Myers Beach.

On Feb. 25, the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) found the two companies that employed the victims to be in violation of several safety policies, according to citations sent out by the organization.

OSHA recommended J Baller Construction, a Fort Myers-based company that employed Bocanegra, pay $11,900 for four violations. According OSHA’s citation, J Baller did not provide its employees accident prevention training, it did not train the aerial lift operator in the hazards of working near energized power lines, and it allowed employees to work in proximity to power lines. OSHA also found Bocanegra was not wearing a safety belt at the time of the accident.

OSHA recommended a $5,600 fine for Cutting Edge Molding, a Sarasota-based company, because Manning was not wearing a safety belt and the company did not instruct its employees in the importance of using fall protection equipment.

Both companies have contested the proposed violations and will have a hearing before the OSHA review commission, according to spokesman Michael D’Aquino.

OSHA citations give recipients the right to contest violations within 15 working days of notification.

Story via news-press.com

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)

Electrical

  • 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)

Story via safteng.net

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

LOTO

  • 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

HAZCOM

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

Story via safteng.net

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OSHA Continues Aggressive Approach for 2013

Continuing the trend observed during President Obama’s first term, the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) will likely continue its aggressive approach toward enforcement, conducting more inspections, finding more violations, handing down stiffer fines and issuing more press releases critical of employers believed to have violated the applicable regulations. There is no reason to believe that OSHA will ease up in any area; rather, employers should expect a renewed commitment from the agency to expand its reach and impact. Indeed, as part of its site-specific targeting program, OSHA has indicated that in the coming year it plans to inspect at least 1,260 highhazard, nonconstruction establishments that employ 20 or more workers.

The agency’s latest regulatory agenda contains over 20 new OSHA rules in varying stages of formulation, some of which will be finalized in 2013.

OSHA anticipates publishing a final rule with respect to injury and illness reporting and recording in May 2013. The final rule, for which OSHA first requested comments back in September 2011, will likely require employers to report any work-related in-patient hospitalization, as opposed to only those work-related in-patient hospitalizations of three or more employees. Additionally, the new rule may require that all work-related amputations be reported within 24 hours.

The rule would also update the list of industries that are partially exempt from the requirement of maintaining a log of occupational injuries and illnesses, usually due to their relatively low rates of occupational injury and illness.

Other rules that may be forthcoming this year include a new rule for confined spaces in construction, a rule amending the electric power transmission and electric power distribution standard, and an updated walking-surfaces standard.

OSHA’s agenda for the coming year also highlights the agency’s desire to create rules related to combustible dust standards, standards for employees who are exposed to infectious diseases, and standards for employees who are exposed to crystalline silica or beryllium.

OSHA will also be busy developing an injury and illness prevention program rule that will require employers to implement a program that includes planning, implementing, evaluating and improving processes and activities to protect employee safety and health. OSHA also intends to review permissible exposure limits of regulated chemicals

Some of these rules have lingered on the regulatory agenda for over a decade. However, with four years to work without a looming bid for reelection, the Obama administration could take this opportunity to bolster OSHA rules.

While not all of the upcoming rules may apply to you, it is important to ensure that your workplace complies with the ever-expanding rules promulgated by OSHA.

Story via lexology.com

OH: OSHA Fines Mahle Engine Components USA Inc $369,000

McConnelsville, Ohio:  The U.S. Department of Labor’s Occupational Safety and Health Administration has cited Mahle Engine Components USA Inc. with 26 health and safety violations, including eight repeat, for exposing workers to electrical, lead, and machine guarding hazards at its automotive parts manufacturing facility in McConnelsville, Ohio. The proposed fines total $369,000.

Two repeat health violations were cited for lead exposure, including failing to record employees’ blood lead levels to monitor exposure to lead, and test the cleanroom for lead contamination. Lead can cause damage to the nervous system and other organs if inhaled or ingested in dangerous quantities. Six repeat safety violations were cited for failing to mount and identify fire extinguishers, provide machine guarding, ensure safe work practices when exposed to electrical hazards, ground pins from electrical equipment, and train workers on recognizing electrical hazards.

“Employers cited for multiple safety and health violations have a responsibility to review their safety and health procedures, evaluate the hazards that exist and train workers to ensure a safe and healthful working environment,” says Nick Walters, OSHA’s regional director in Chicago. “When an employer, such as Mahle, is cited for repeat violations, it shows a lack of commitment to protecting the safety and health of workers. OSHA will not tolerate such negligence.”

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. Mahle Engine Components USA was previously cited for these violations during inspections in 2009 and 2011 at the McConnelsville location as well as at facilities in Manchester, Mo., and Trumbull, Conn.

A total of 18 serious violations were cited for lack of machine guarding; improper storage of acetylene and oxygen cylinders; electrical hazards; lack of load ratings on hook lifting devices; allowing operators to carry loads traveling over people creating a struck-by hazard; improper storage of respirators; failing to provide appropriate personal protective equipment and require its use; and keep the tables in the lunch room clean and free of lead accumulation. 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.

Because of the hazards and the violations cited, Mahle Engine Components has been placed in OSHA’s Severe Violator Enforcement Program, which mandates targeted follow-up inspections to ensure compliance with the law. OSHA’s SVEP focuses on recalcitrant employers that endanger workers by committing willful, repeat or failure-to-abate violations. Under the program, OSHA may inspect any of the employer’s facilities if it has reasonable grounds to believe there are similar violations.

The company, headquartered in Morristown, Tenn., has operated the McConnelsville facility since 2008 and is a subsidiary of the Mahle Group, which employees about 50,000 workers and operates about 100 production plants worldwide. Inspected in 2009 and 2010, the McConnelsville facility has been cited with a total of 17 violations.

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

Story via cemag.us

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Wisconsin: OSHA Fines near $500,000 for Highway Technologies Inc.

Wisconsin: On Sept. 17, 2012, a worker employed by Highway Technologies Inc. was fatally injured while working with equipment that came into contact with overhead power lines during highway work in western Wisconsin. OSHA issued 10 safety violations with proposed penalties totaling $448,000 and placed the company in its Severe Violator Enforcement Program.

Highway Technologies Inc. was performing guardrail and sign installation for a 13-mile stretch of I-94 near Menomonie, Wis., under contract with the Wisconsin Department of Transportation when the incident occurred.

“Highway Technologies failed to protect its workers from serious electrocution hazards,” said Assistant Secretary of Labor for Occupational Safety and Health Dr. David Michaels. “Multiple instances of the same violation over a period of time clearly demonstrate a willful failure to comply with basic safety and health standards. Employers must take steps to eliminate hazards and provide a safe working environment.”

OSHA issued citations for six willful violations of failing to ensure that parts of the equipment being operated were not within 10 feet of a power line, exposing workers to electrical shock and electrocution hazards. These citations also include instances of failing to ensure that any part of the machinery was not within 6 feet of an overhead power line while the machinery was traveling beneath the power lines.

Four serious violations also cited include failing to identify electrical work zones, determine if any part of the equipment being operated would be closer than 20 feet of a power line, train each worker on safe clearance distances from power lines and evaluate that each employee understood the training and risks of working near overhead power lines.

Due to the nature of the hazards and the violations cited, Highway Technologies Inc. has been placed in OSHA’s Severe Violator Enforcement Program, which mandates targeted follow-up inspections to ensure future compliance with the law. Under the program, OSHA may inspect any of the employer’s facilities if it has reasonable grounds to believe there are similar violations.

Houston-based Highway Technologies Inc. employs about 1,500 workers in 13 states installing highway guardrails, crash attenuators, barrier walls and signage. Prior to this investigation, the company had been inspected by OSHA 10 times since 2007, resulting in citations for nine serious violations. One of these inspections was initiated based on employee injuries sustained from contacting an overhead power line while installing a highway sign.

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

Story via ehstoday.com

 

TX: OSHA Fines BMC Building Materials $41K; Electrical Cord Problems

January 23, 2013 Leave a comment

New Braunfels, TX: A New Braunfels company has been fined by OSHA, the Occupational Safety and Health Administration, which says they found a total of 7 serious safety violations during a recent inspection.

BMC Building Materials and Construction Services, located on FM 482 here in New Braunfels, builds prefabricated wood trusses.  But they are now facing fines totaling 41-thousand dollars following OSHA’s allegations that the company exposes workers to electric and machine guarding hazards.

Specifically, OSHA claims that during a safety inspection back in October (which was prompted by a complaint about unsafe working conditions) they discovered 7 separate safety violations including a lack of machine guarding on machinery equipment, saw blades, rotating shafts, and pulleys, which OSHA says can lead to serious injuries, including amputations.

Other violations included failing to ensure that electrical wiring is protected, and ensuring electrical cords are maintained in a safe condition.  OSHA says a serious violation is issued when there is substantial probability that death or serious physical harm could result from a hazard that the employer either knew about or should have known about.

BMC Building Materials now has 15 business days to comply with the safety regulations, request an informal conference with OSHA’s area director in Austin, or contest the citations and penalties before an independent OSHA Review Commission.

Story via www.kgnb.am

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