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DuraLabel's Weekly Safety News

Blog Author Steve Hudgik

Weekly safety news. Stay in touch with what is happening at OSHA as well as other workplace safety news. Includes a report on the significant OSHA citations announced the previous week. Plus we scan national and local (and world) publications for workplace safety news. This is your source for the latest safety news.


Monday, February 25, 2013

Significant OSHA Citations

The following is a summary of OSHA and state OSHA significant citations that have proposed fines over $100,000 that were announced during the week ending February 23rd.

The following are based on a press releases from OSHA and other sources. We are now including reports from states, such as California, Oregon and Wyoming, in which the state has responsibility for workplace safety enforcement.

Flash dust fire results in two deaths and OSHA citations in Texas ($119,840)
C and H Die Casting Inc. in Texas cited for electrical, guarding and fall hazards ($112,500)



OSHA has cited Watco Mechanical Services, Jordan General Contractors Inc. and JP Electric after a combustible dust flash fire claimed the lives of two workers at a Hockley work site. Proposed penalties for the three companies total $119,840.

OSHA began its investigation on Aug. 19, 2012, at the Watco Mechanical Services work site on Premium Drive where workers were conducting blasting operations in the facility's tank and hopper building. Employees were cutting metal with a torch when a fire broke out, killing two workers employed by Magnolia, Texas-based Jordan General Contractors.

Jordan General Contractors was cited with seven serious violations for failing to:
  • develop and implement a respiratory program
  • provide training on the hazards of working with combustible dust
  • ensure cutting operations are halted in the presence of combustible dust
  • ensure the use of a body belt when working in an aerial lift
  • ensure aerial lift loads do not exceed required limits
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. Proposed penalties total $20,240.

OSHA cited Pittsburg, Kansas based Watco Mechanical Services with 14 serious violations, including failing to:
  • adequately control fugitive emissions of combustible dust
  • keep work areas clean of combustible dust
  • provide warning signs to alert employees of combustible dust hazards
  • keep emergency cylinder respirators fully charged
  • identify and evaluate confined space hazards
  • develop and implement confined space procedures
OSHA also cited the company with two other-than-serious violations for failing to certify the use of emergency respirators and document filter changes. Proposed penalties for Watco Mechanical Services total $91,300.

Conroe, Texas-based JP Electric, which assisted in demolition activities, was cited with one serious safety violation for failing to prohibit cutting operations in the presence of combustible dust. Proposed penalties total $2,800.

Citations can be viewed at http://www.osha.gov/ooc/citations/WATCOMechanicalServices_587438_021513.pdf
http://www.osha.gov/ooc/citations/JordanGeneralContractorsInc_587409_021513.pdf
http://www.osha.gov/ooc/citations/JPElectric_587458_021513.pdf

The companies have 15 business days from receipt of citations to comply, request an informal conference with OSHA's Houston North office or contest the citations and proposed penalties before the independent Occupational Safety and Health Review Commission.



USDA photo showing a typical aluminum
die casting facility.
OSHA has cited C and H Die Casting Inc. with 24 alleged serious violations at its aluminum die cast manufacturing facility on Lely Drive in Troy, Texas. The safety and health inspections, which began in August 2012, were conducted under OSHA's Site-Specific Targeting Program that directs enforcement resources to workplaces where the highest rates of injuries and illnesses occur. Proposed penalties total $112,500.

The serious safety violations include failing to:
  • provide the required machine guarding for saws and covers on rotating belts and pulleys
  • ensure electrical wiring is properly installed
  • ensure electrical cords are properly maintained
  • prevent exposure to slip, trip and fall hazards due to wet floors
  • cover floor holes
  • provide fall protection equipment for workers climbing machinery during repairs
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.

Hazards associated with unprotected machinery, such as saw blades, rotating belts and pulleys, can often be controlled. Information on machine guarding and amputation hazards is available at http://www.osha.gov/SLTC/machineguarding/index.html.

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



Related Past Posts:
Significant OSHA Citations - Week Ending February 16th
Significant OSHA Citations - Week Ending February 9th
Significant OSHA Citations - Week Ending February 2nd


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