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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.


Monday, March 26, 2012

Summary Of Major OSHA Citations - Week Of March 19th



Summary of major OSHA citations announced during the week of March 19th.

The following are based on press releases from OSHA.


OSHA Cites Verizon NY For Safety Violations Following Death ($140,700)
OSHA Cites NH Contractor Following Fatal Fall At Keene Middle School ($167,580)
OSHA Cited Hobbs Bonded Fibers Following Amputation Incident ($103,950)
OSHA Proposes Fines Against Polychem in Leetonia, Ohio For 30 Violations ($103,500)
OSHA Fines Bradken Inc. For Exposing Workers To Safety And Health Hazards ($146,000)

OSHA has cited Verizon N.Y. Inc. for 10 alleged violations of workplace safety standards following the Sept. 14 electrocution death of an employee at a work site in Brooklyn at New Lots and Christopher Avenues. A field technician working in an aerial lift bucket was installing steel suspension strands when he came in contact with an energized power line.

An inspection by OSHA's Manhattan Area Office found that the employee and bucket were too close to the power line, the employee had not been adequately trained and he lacked insulated gloves. OSHA cited three repeat violations for these conditions, as Verizon had been cited for similar hazards in 2007 following the death of a worker at a Providence, R.I., work site. 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.

"Every workplace death is needless. A combination of effective training and safe work practices could have prevented this incident," said Kay Gee, OSHA's area director for Brooklyn, Manhattan and Queens. "The recurring nature of some of these hazards is disturbing. Verizon must take effective action to ensure that its workers are adequately protected so that this does not happen again."

The inspection also found that the steel suspension strands had not been grounded during installation, employees were not wearing hard hats, personal protective equipment had not been inspected and employees had not been adequately trained in safe work practices. These conditions resulted in citations for five serious violations. 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.

Two other-than-serious violations involve an incomplete and uncertified injury and illness log. 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.

"To prevent hazards, employers should initiate and maintain effective illness and injury prevention programs in which they work with their employees to identify and eliminate hazards before anyone is harmed," said Robert Kulick, OSHA's regional director in New York.

The citations can be viewed at http://www.osha.gov/ooc/citations/Verizon.pdf*. Verizon, which faces a total of $140,700 in fines, has 15 business days from receipt of its citations and proposed penalties to comply, meet with OSHA's area director or contest the findings before the independent Occupational Safety and Health Review Commission.


OSHA has cited The MacMillin Co. Inc. for alleged willful and serious violations of safety standards following the death of an employee on Sept. 16 at a Keene Middle School construction site. Temporary employees working under the direction of the Keene-based contractor were erecting scaffolding when the plank upon which the victim was working snapped, resulting in a 27-foot fatal fall to the concrete floor below.

An inspection by OSHA's Concord Area Office found that the scaffold had not been inspected for defects, the employees had not been adequately trained in the erection and inspection of scaffolding, and the employer did not determine the feasibility of or ensure the use of fall protection for employees during the scaffold erection. These conditions resulted in citations for three willful violations. A willful violation is one committed with intentional knowing or voluntary disregard for the law's requirements, or with plain indifference to worker safety and health.

Additionally, the scaffold planks could not support four times their maximum allowable load as required, all of the scaffold's supporting legs were not set on base plates, scaffold planks were covered with paint and the employees were not adequately supervised during the scaffold erection. These conditions resulted in citations for four serious violations. 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.

"Proper planning, inspection procedures, employee training and equipment could have prevented this incident and the worker's death that resulted," said Rosemarie Ohar, OSHA's New Hampshire area director. "I strongly suggest that employers who use scaffolding make the time and effort to review their equipment, work practices and employee training, and take any necessary corrective steps to prevent future falls that can result in injuries and deaths."

Detailed information on scaffolding hazards and safeguards, including an interactive eTool, is available at http://www.osha.gov/SLTC/scaffolding/construction.html.

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

The MacMillin Co. Inc., which faces a total of $167,580 in proposed fines, has 15 business days from receipt of its citations and proposed penalties to comply, meet with OSHA's area director or contest the findings before the independent Occupational Safety and Health Review Commission.


OSHA has cited Hobbs Bonded Fibers Inc. for one willful and five serious safety violations after an employee reportedly suffered an amputation at the company's facility on Commerce Drive in Waco. OSHA's Fort Worth Area Office began its investigation Sept. 20 following a report that an employee's arm was pulled into the rollers of an operating textile machine while the employee was cleaning fibrous material out from under the machine.

The willful violation is failing to ensure that shaft ends were guarded and keyways covered, and machine guarding was provided for rotating belts, pulleys, chains and sprockets to prevent contact with pinch points. A willful violation is one committed with intentional knowing or voluntary disregard for the law's requirements, or with plain indifference to worker safety and health.

The serious violations include failing to ensure an exit route met height/width requirements and was not located in a high-hazard area, provide specific lockout/tagout procedures to verify the control of energy and train workers in relevant lockout/tagout procedures when their job assignments were changed. 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.

"Hobbs Bonded Fibers failed to ensure that proper lockout and tagout procedures for hazardous energy sources were followed," said Jack Rector, OSHA's area director in Fort Worth. "It is the employer's responsibility to safeguard the workplace for employees. No worker should have to suffer what this worker did in an effort to earn a paycheck."

Proposed penalties for these most recent violations total $103,950. The citations can be viewed at http://www.osha.gov/ooc/citations/Hobbs-Bonded-Fibers-Inc-314281221_0319_12.pdf*.

In June 2011, OSHA cited Hobbs with 29 serious violations carrying $161,100 in penalties for exposing workers to a variety of workplace hazards. The company has contested these citations and penalties.


OSHA has cited Polychem OMS Systems LLC, a specialty manufacturer of equipment for the production and processing of metals and plastic products in Leetonia, with 30 safety and health violations, including exposing workers to amputation hazards. Proposed penalties total $103,500.

OSHA initiated an inspection in September based on a complaint. Twenty-one serious safety violations involve failing to establish a lockout/tagout program to control the energy sources of equipment; remove damaged web slings from service; provide machine guarding on lathes, blades, grinders and other equipment; provide personal protective equipment for electrical work; inspect trucks prior to use; remove defective vehicles from service; and train workers to operate powered industrial trucks.

Six serious health violations include failing to provide other personal protective equipment, develop and implement a respirator program, conduct fire extinguisher training, develop and implement a hazard communication program, label hazardous chemicals, and properly store flammable and combustible liquids. 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 is failing to tag alloy steel slings with size, grade and capacity information. Additionally, two other-than-serious health violations are failing to provide written certification that a hazard assessment was conducted, and maintain the OSHA 300 injury and illness log. 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.

"Polychem OMS Systems has the responsibility to ensure that its employees are properly trained and protected from amputation hazards such as those caused by the lack of machine guarding, and to provide personal protective equipment to keep workers safe on the job," said Howard Eberts, OSHA's area director in Cleveland. "OSHA is committed to protecting workers, especially when employers fail to do so."

The citations can be viewed at http://www.osha.gov/ooc/citations/Polychem-OMS-Systems_98859_0315_12.pdf* http://www.osha.gov/ooc/citations/Polychem-OMS-Systems_98846_0315_12.pdf*.

Polychem OMS Systems is an affiliate of Polychem in Mentor and employs about 12 workers at the Leetonia site. 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.


OSHA has cited Bradken Inc. with 27 serious and seven other-than-serious violations for exposing workers to safety and health violations at the company's steel alloy casting facility in Amite. Proposed penalties total $146,000.

OSHA's Baton Rouge Area Office began its inspection at the Foulkes Lane facility as part of two national emphasis programs, one on amputations and the other on primary metals. Inspectors found that workers melting and pouring casts were exposed to mechanical, welding, electrical and confined space hazards, as well as a lack of machine guarding.

The serious violations include failing to repair damaged and unguarded electrical equipment, such as safety switches and control panels; ensure that electrical shut-off devices were accessible; ground electrical equipment; properly splice electrical cords; regularly inspect electrical equipment; properly store compressed gas cylinders and ensure that shut-off valves were accessible; provide adequate hazardous energy control equipment; provide required machine guarding; properly maintain cranes; provide fall protection such as guardrails or personal fall arrest systems; properly label containers; and provide training on the use of forklifts. 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 other-than-serious violations include failing to ensure that exits were clear of materials, fire extinguishers were easily accessible, and breaker panels were accessible and properly labeled. 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.

"Employers are responsible for recognizing the hazards that exist in their facilities and fixing them," said Dorinda Folse, OSHA's area director in Baton Rouge. "Failing to take precautions against safety and health hazards unnecessarily puts workers at risk of serious injuries and illnesses."

The citations can be viewed at http://www.osha.gov/ooc/citations/BradkenInc_314773920_0316_12.pdf
http://www.osha.gov/ooc/citations/BradkenInc_314773938_0316_12.pdf.

Bradken, a global supplier headquartered in Waratah, Australia, employs about 270 workers at the Amite facility who produce large steel alloy castings for the mining, freight rail and steel industries worldwide. The company has 15 business days from receipt of citations to comply, request an informal conference with OSHA's Baton Rouge Area Office, or contest the citations and proposed penalties before the independent Occupational Safety and Health Review Commission.



Related Past Posts:
Summary of OSHA Citations For Week Of February 26th
Summary Of OSHA Citations For Week Of March 5th
Summary Of OSHA Citations For Week Of March 12th

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posted by Steve Hudgik
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2 Comments:

Blogger SteelFabCorp said...

What is history of OSHA citations? Your reporting of OSHA citations seems to be a longer and longer list. Are we getting more OSHA citations issued this year than last? Are there any summaries of what is being cited? Is there any way we can see if there are any trends?

8:50 AM  
Blogger Steve Hudgik said...

Thank you for your comment SteelFabCorp. At the end of each fiscal year OSHA publishes a summary of the previous year's citations. You can get a summary of the 2010 report by going to: http://www.graphicproducts.com/free-gifts/free-top-ten-osha-violations.php

8:56 AM  

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