Posts Tagged ‘Occupational Safety and Health Administration’

In Beef With Meatpacker, OSHA Dings Texas Co. $615,640 for Worker Safety Violations at Its Plant

This meatpacking plan might be producing the finest steaks anywhere, but it is doing so at the expense of worker health, the federal government charged.

The U.S. Department of Labor’s Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) has cited 7 S Packing LLC – operating as Texas Packing Company in San Angelo, Texas – for exposing workers to releases of hazardous chemicals. The company faces $615,640 in penalties.

OSHA determined that the meat-packing facility failed to implement a required Process Safety Management (PSM) program for operating an ammonia refrigeration unit containing over 10,000 pounds of anhydrous ammonia. The employer also failed to provide fall protection, guard machines and equipment, control hazardous energy, and implement a respiratory protection program.

The PSM Covered Chemical Facilities National Emphasis Program focuses on reducing or eliminating workplace hazards at chemical facilities to protect workers from catastrophic releases of highly hazardous chemicals. PSM standards emphasize the management of hazards associated with highly hazardous chemicals, and establishes a comprehensive management program that integrates technologies, procedures, and management practices to prevent an unexpected release.

The company has 15 business days from receipt of the 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.

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 help 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,

My thanks to Jon Hyman for linking to this blog post from his weekly roundup for the Ohio Employer Law Blog on Friday, May 10.

OSHA Showers $10.5M in Grant Money on Nonprofits, Small Businesses, Other Sectors

Fire up your grant proposals! There’s money to be had from the federal government to improve worker safety.

The U.S. Department of Labor’s Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) May 3  announced the availability of $10.5 million in Susan Harwood Training Grants for nonprofit organizations including community and faith-based organizations, employer associations, labor unions, joint labor/management associations, Indian tribes, and colleges and universities.

The Harwood Training Grant program supports in-person, hands-on training for workers and employers in small businesses; industries with high injury, illness and fatality rates; and vulnerable workers, who are underserved, have limited English proficiency or are temporary workers. The grants will fund training and education to help workers and employers identify and prevent workplace safety and health hazards.

Grants are available in three areas: Targeted Topic Training, Training and Educational Materials Development, and Capacity Building.

  • Targeted Topic Training grants support educational programs that address identifying and preventing workplace hazards. These grants require applicants to conduct training on OSHA-designated workplace safety and health hazards.
  • Training and Educational Materials Development grants support the development of quality classroom-ready training and educational materials that focus on identifying and preventing workplace hazards.
  • Capacity Building grants support organizations in developing new capacity for conducting workplace safety and health training programs, and must provide training and education based on identified needs of a specific audience or a set of related topics.

Details on the grants and how to apply are available at Grants.gov.  Harwood applications must be submitted online no later than 11:59 p.m. EDT on Tuesday, July 2, 2019. Applicants must possess a “D-U-N-S” number and have an active System of Award Management (SAM) registration.  A D-U-N-S number may be obtained free-of-charge from Dun & Bradstreet.

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 help 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 www.osha.gov.

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OSHA Violations Set Prep School Back $331K

This military prep school may excel at preparing future leaders. Workers safety? Not so much.

The U.S. Department of Labor’s Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) has cited Riverside Military Academy Inc. – a military college preparatory academy in Gainesville, Georgia – for exposing employees to trenching hazards. The company faces $381,882 in penalties, including citations for the maximum penalties allowed by law.

OSHA issued willful citations for allowing employees to work inside a trench without cave-in protection and a safe means to enter and exit the excavation, and failing to locate underground utilities prior to conducting excavation work. OSHA also issued serious citations for failing to identify permit-required confined spaces, and train employees to recognize and avoid trenching hazards. The investigation was part of OSHA’s National Emphasis Program on Trenching and Excavation. OSHA has placed Riverside Military Academy Inc. in its Severe Violator Enforcement Program.

“Trenching and excavation hazards are preventable if employers follow OSHA standards and use required protective systems to keep workers safe,” said OSHA Atlanta-East Area Office Director William Fulcher.

OSHA’s Trenching and Excavation safety and health page includes information on sloping, shoring, and shielding trench walls to prevent trench cave-ins, and methods to prevent other trenching hazards.

The company has 15 business 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.

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 help 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 https://www.osha.gov

Our-Way-Or-the-Highway: Montana Contractor Fined for Safety Flaws at Asphalt Mixing Plant

You know those mobile machines that mix asphalt during highway construction? Turns out they can be hazardous for workers.

The U.S. Department of Labor’s Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) has cited Nelcon Inc. – a highway contractor based in Kalispell, Montana – for exposing workers to burns and falls at a mobile asphalt-mixing plant in Laurel, Montana. The company faces $261,418 in penalties for 23 serious violations.

Three workers suffered burns when ambient oil was poured into a larger hot oil tank. One of the workers was hospitalized after falling approximately 15 feet during the incident. OSHA inspectors determined that Nelcon Inc. failed to use fall protection systems; guard machinery; provide adequate personal protective equipment; control hazardous energy; and report a work-related incident leading to in-patient hospitalization within 24 hours, as required.

The company has 15 business 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.

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 help ensure these conditions for American working men and women by setting and enforcing standards, and providing training, education, and assistance. For more information, visit https://www.osha.gov.

Furniture Maker Fined $378K Penalty for Exposing Workers to Unsafe Conditions

Making a desk shouldn’t come at the price of worker safety, but federal enforcers say that’s just what happened at this New Hampshire facility.

The U.S. Department of Labor’s Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) has cited DCI Inc. for exposing employees to crushing and struck-by hazards at its Lisbon, New Hampshire, manufacturing plant. The furniture manufacturer faces a total of $378,488 in penalties after OSHA found 37 violations of workplace safety and health standards at the facility.

OSHA opened an inspection after an employee suffered serious injuries after being pulled into an automated woodcutting machine. Inspectors found that a supervisor had disabled a light curtain on the machine, preventing the machine from stopping when an individual comes too close to its point of operation. OSHA cited DCI for a willful violation for this hazard.

“Worker safety must always be an employer’s priority,” said OSHA Concord Area Office Director Rosemarie O. Cole. “Proactively addressing hazards achieves this goal.”

Concurrent comprehensive safety and health inspections identified other violations throughout the plant, including obstructed emergency exit routes; lack of eye, hand, and face protection; inadequate hearing and respirator safeguards; lack of procedures and training to prevent the unintended activation of machinery; amputation and laceration hazards; flammable and toxic hazards; untrained forklift operators; and electrical hazards.

View DCI’s citations herehere, and here. The company has 15 business days from receipt of its 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.

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 help 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 https://www.osha.gov.

OSHA Dings Employer $159K Over Amputations

What exposure does an employer face when it exposes its workers to risk of amputation from operating the machinery?

The U.S. Department of Labor’s Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) has cited Heritage Plastics Inc. for exposing employees to amputations at the company’s facility in Picayune, Mississippi. The plastics manufacturer faces $159,118 in penalties, including a willful violation that carries the maximum penalty allowed.

An employee suffered the amputation of four fingers when the mixing machine from which the employee was removing material unexpectedly started. OSHA inspectors determined that Heritage Plastics failed to require the use of a lockout device and train employees on procedures to control the release of hazardous energy. OSHA also cited the employer for failing to install machine guarding. The inspection is part of OSHA’s National Emphasis Program on Amputations.”

“Proper safety procedures, including the effective lockout of all sources of energy, could have prevented this employee’s serious injury,” said OSHA Jackson Area Office Director Courtney Bohannon. “Employers must take proactive steps to develop and implement energy control procedures to minimize risk to their employees.”

The company has 15 business 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.

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 help 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 https://www.osha.gov.

My thanks to Jon Hyman of the Ohio Employer Law Blog for linking to this post in his April 19 weekly roundup.

Falling Down: N.J. Contractor Fined $118K by OSHA for Hazards at Home Construction Site

Elimination of falling hazards continues to vex worksites in this country.

The U.S. Department of Labor’s Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) has cited Brutus Construction Inc. for exposing employees to fall and other safety hazards at a worksite in Souderton, Pennsylvania. The company faces $181,699 in penalties.

An OSHA inspector observed employees working without fall protection on roofs at a residential construction site. OSHA cited Brutus Construction Inc. for willfully exposing employees to fall hazards, repeat safety hazards, and failure to provide fall protection training.

“Companies that fail to meet basic fall protection requirements place employees’ lives at risk,” said OSHA Allentown Area Director Jean Kulp.

OSHA has cited Brutus Construction Inc. 19 times in the past for similar hazards, and proposed nearly $440,000 in penalties.

The company, based in Mount Laurel, New Jersey, has 15 business 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.

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 help 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 https://www.osha.gov