DuraLabel's Weekly Safety News

Blog Author Angelique Sanders

Weekly safety news. Stay in touch with regulations from OSHA, NFPA, and other safety codes. Find out about other companies' best and worst practices. We scour the internet to provide you with helpful training resources and the latest safety information.

Tuesday, October 11, 2011

Concrete Producer Cited by OSHA; More Than $120,000 In Fines Proposed

OSHA has cited Candler Concrete Products Inc. for 19 safety and health violations following an inspection of the company's Gainesville plant, which was initiated under OSHA's Site-Specific Targeting Program for industries with high occupational injury and illness rates. The proposed penalties total $120,370.  The citation included violations of OSHA's exit sign codes.

The OSHA citation included one willful safety violation with a penalty of $48,400 for requiring employees performing maintenance on vehicles and equipment to work within 3 feet of an open and unguarded pit, exposing them to fall hazards.

Six repeat safety violations with a total of $45,830 in penalties included:

- failing to remove equipment blocking an exit route
- failing to mark signs at fire exit doors
- failing to correctly mark a door that could be mistaken for an exit door
- failure to provide lockout/tagout training to workers who perform maintenance on machinery and equipment
- failure to close an unused opening in an electrical panel
- failure to provide outer insulation to an electrical cord attached to a piece of machinery and protect employees from electrical shock 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. The company had been cited for these same violations following a March 2008 inspection.

There were also six serious safety violations with penalties of $19,250. They involved failing to keep a clean and orderly work site, illuminate an exit sign, maintain an operable emergency pull cable and provide flashback protection for a gas welding torch. Additionally, employees were exposed to fall hazards at two different platforms because the platforms were open-sided or had improper railings. 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 safety violation with a $1,000 penalty was issued because the company failed to post an annual summary of its injuries and illnesses for 2010. Two other-than serious safety violations with no monetary penalties were cited because the company allowed flexible cords to be used in lieu of permanent wiring and permitted electrical boxes to have openings that resulted in electrical conductors not being protected from abrasion. 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.

One repeat health violation with a $500 penalty was cited for failing to label and identify the contents of a drum containing hazardous chemicals. A similar violation was cited in a 2008 inspection. One serious health violation with a $5,390 penalty was cited for failing to develop and implement a confined space program to protect employees who did welding in the drum of a concrete truck with minimal ventilation. An other-than-serious health violation with no monetary penalty was cited because the diesel tank label beside the scale house was not legible.

"An employer's commitment to workers' safety and health must go beyond policies and involve taking real actions that prevent injuries and illnesses," said William Fulcher, director of OSHA's Atlanta-East Area Office. "Management cannot be complacent about eliminating the workplace hazards that OSHA has found here."

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posted by Steve Hudgik
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