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, July 16, 2012

Summary Of Major OSHA Citations - Week Ending July 14th

A summary of major OSHA citations announced during the week ending July 14th.

The following is based on press releases from OSHA.

OSHA proposes fines for electrical, crushing and laceration hazards ($132,000)
OSHA cites Pennsylvania-based Arkema for safety violations at Houston facility ($117,100)

Huntsville, Ala., contractor cited by OSHA for trenching violations ($122,400)OSHA cites Sandwich Castings and Machine in Illinois for 20 violations ($113,000)

OSHA has cited Cives Steel Co. for alleged willful, repeat and serious violations of workplace safety standards at its Augusta production facility. The steel products fabricator faces a total of $132,000 in proposed fines for electrical, crushing, laceration and other hazards identified during an inspection by OSHA's Augusta Area Office begun in January.

OSHA found that maintenance employees were not supplied with and did not use personal protective equipment to protect themselves against the hazards of electric shock, arc flash and arc blast while performing diagnostic work on electrical equipment. This situation resulted in OSHA issuing the plant one willful citation, with a $70,000 fine.

Another electrical hazard cited is the use of extension cords as a substitute for fixed wiring, a condition similar to one for which OSHA had cited Cives Steel's Gouverneur, N.Y., plant in 2010. This situation resulted in the issuance of one repeat citation, with a $22,000 fine.

Nine serious citations, with $40,000 in fines, have been issued for crushing hazards stemming from the plant's failure to label and test the weight capacity of an in-house fabricated lifting device used to lift metal plates weighing up to 900 pounds; laceration hazards from the unsafe practice of drop staring a chain saw; a lack of leg protection while using chain saws; falls from standing on raw and fabricated steel products; an incomplete confined space entry program; inadequate egress from a mezzanine and additional electrical hazards.

The inspection was conducted under OSHA's Site-Specific Targeting Program, which directs inspections toward workplaces with a rate of workdays lost due to injuries and illnesses that is higher than the industry average.

The citations can be viewed at http://www.osha.gov/ooc/citations/CivesSteelCompany_316216969_0706_12.pdf*.

Cives Steel Co. has15 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.

OSHA has cited King of Prussia, Pa.-based Arkema Inc. with 12 serious, one repeat and one other-than-serious violations for exposing workers to multiple safety hazards while producing organic chemicals at the company's Houston facility. OSHA's initiated an inspection of the Haden Road plant in January after receiving an employee complaint, and later expanded the inspection under the agency's process safety management national emphasis program for preventing or minimizing the catastrophic release of toxic, reactive, flammable or explosive chemicals. Proposed penalties total $117,100.

The serious violations include:

- failing to compile process safety information on instruments used as safeguards and on relief system design

- failing to ensure that recognized and good engineering practices are used

- failure to follow recommended process hazard analysis procedures

- failure to inspect and test equipment identified as safeguards

The repeat violation is for failing to review and certify operating procedures on an annual basis to ensure that current practices are being followed. A similar violation was cited in 2010.

The other-than-serious violation is for failing to develop safe work practices to control entrance into covered processes. 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.

The citations can be viewed at http://www.osha.gov/ooc/citations/ArkemaInc_316217835_0710_12.pdf*.

Arkema employs about 2,400 workers who produce industrial chemicals at 32 facilities in the United States and Canada, Mexico and Brazil. The company has 15 business days from receipt of its citations to comply, request an informal conference with OSHA's Houston North area director, or contest the citations and penalties before the independent Occupational Safety and Health Review Commission.

OSHA's standards contain specific requirements for the management of hazards associated with processes using dangerous chemicals. Additional information is available online at http://www.osha.gov/SLTC/processsafetymanagement/index.html.

DKS Structural Services Inc., doing business as Don Kennedy and Sons House Moving Co., has been cited by OSHA for four trenching violations.

OSHA opened an investigation after receiving a complaint from a whistle-blower who alleged he was terminated for refusing to enter an unprotected trench. At the time of the incident, the whistle-blower and other workers were performing foundation repair work at 1200 Shadow Ridge Drive in Huntsville.

The proposed OSHA penalties total $122,400.

Two willful violations involve failing to provide a safe means of entrance and exit from an excavation and not providing cave-in protection for employees working in a trench that was 15 feet deep. These citations carry $112,000 in penalties.

Two serious violations involve exposing employees to fall and crushing hazards by allowing them to stand in a backhoe bucket as a means to lower and raise them in the excavation, as well as exposing workers to "struck-by" hazards from loose soil, rocks and equipment by not having them wear head protection. These citations carry $10,400 in proposed penalties.

OSHA standards mandate that all excavations 5 feet or deeper be protected against collapse. Detailed information on trenching and excavation hazards is available on OSHA's website at http://www.osha.gov/SLTC/trenchingexcavation/index.html.

The citations in this case can be viewed at http://www.osha.gov/ooc/citations/DKS_Structural_Services_316228519_0711_12.pdf*.
This Section 11(c) whistleblower investigation has been referred to the department's Office of the Solicitor for potential litigation.

DKS Structural Services Inc. is based in Huntsville and specializes in structural relocation, foundation repair and leveling.

OSHA has cited aluminum castings producer Trio Foundry Inc., which operates as Sandwich Castings and Machine, with 20 health and safety violations, including one willful and one repeat violation. A health inspection that began January 13th in Sandwich as part of OSHA's Local Emphasis Program for Primary Metals. Upon finding several safety violations, OSHA subsequently opened a safety inspection on February 10th.
The proposed penalties total $113,300.

The willful safety violation was failing to protect the operator of a belt sander from "caught-in" hazards and rotating parts.

The repeat safety violation involved a lack of guarding on an abrasive grinder wheel.

Nine serious safety violations involve a lack of machine guarding, the documentation of "lockout/tagout" procedures for machines' energy sources, proper electrical equipment maintenance, personal protective equipment and safety training for maintenance workers handling electrical equipment. Seven serious health violations involve using an unsecured propane tank as fuel for heat as well as failing to provide personal protective equipment against exposure and contact to molten metal, ensure adequate housekeeping to prevent aluminum dust accumulation on surfaces and floors, train and evaluate forklift drivers, and provide workers with hazardous chemical safety information and training in hazard communication.

Two other-than-serious violations involve failing to maintain a written and certified personal protective equipment hazard assessment as well as certification that employees received training in the use of the equipment.

The citations can be viewed at: http://www.osha.gov/ooc/citations/TrioFoundry_111193_191156_0710_12.pdf*.

In addition to the Sandwich facility, Aurora-based Trio Industries operates a foundry in Montgomery. The Sandwich facility, where about 25 workers are employed, has been inspected by OSHA four other times since 2007.

Related Past Posts:

Last Week's Major OSHA Citations - OSHA Fines Earth Friendly Products
Major OSHA Citation - $463,350 Fine For Construction Hazards
Major OSHA Citations - Tribe Mediterranean Foods Cited

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