Week of Aug 16-22

Alabama Auto Dealership Settles with OSHA Following Fatal Fire

OSHA and Carl Cannon Inc., an automobile dealership, have reached a settlement agreement to resolve citations and penalties issued after five employees were injured, three fatally, in a fire at the company’s Jasper, Alabama, facility. The company will pay $114,074 in penalties.

OSHA’s investigation determined that the fire occurred as employees used a flammable brake wash to scrub the service pit floor. OSHA cited the company for failing to implement all elements of a chemical hazard communication program, improperly storing flammable liquids, and allowing the use of unapproved electrical receptacles and equipment in a hazardous area.

As part of the settlement, which became final on Aug. 1, 2018, the company agreed to correct the hazards, provide the required abatement documentation, and comply with safety and health standards.

Companies in Florida and Texas Cited for Trenching Hazards in Separate Incidents

OSHA cited Archer Western Construction, Inc., for safety violations after two employees suffered fatal injuries while performing trenching activities.

Inspectors determined the company failed to inspect the work area for hazards and brace a section of a concrete highway barrier that later collapsed.

OSHA proposed penalties totaling $33,259.

El Paso Underground Construction faces $190,642 in proposed penalties for exposing employees to trench collapse hazards. Inspectors found the company failed to provide training and implement trench protections. OSHA cited the company four times in 2017 for similar violations.

The agency has placed the company in the Severe Violator Enforcement Program.

Illinois Adhesive Manufacturer Cited for Serious Health and Safety Violations

Adhesive Systems, Inc., was cited for multiple safety and health violations.

The company failed:

  • To provide employees with respirator fit tests and appropriate respirators;
  • To Ensure electrical equipment was approved for use in hazardous atmospheres; and
  • To Conduct a personal protective equipment assessment. OSHA proposed penalties of $587,564.

Ohio Manufacturer Cited For Exposing Employees to Excessive Noise and Other Hazards

OSHA cited Polystar Containment for exposing employees to excessive noise that led to hearing loss.

The agency concluded that the employer:

  • Failed to monitor employee hearing loss;
  • Did not install controls to reduce noise levels;
  • Failed to use machine guards;
  • Failed to provide adequate respiratory protection;
  • Did not remove damaged forklifts from use;
  • Did not train workers on hazardous communication; and
  • Failed to properly store flammable materials.

The company faces penalties totaling $331,490.

Kansas Grain Bin Operator Cited Following Fatal Engulfment of Two Workers

OSHA cited Gavilon Grain, LLC, after two workers were fatally engulfed in a soybean storage bin.

Inspectors found that the company allowed employees to enter a bin in which bridged and/or hung-up grain was present. Gavilon also failed to lock out equipment to prevent unintentional startup, or provide employees with lifelines, fall protection, and rescue equipment.

The company faces proposed penalties of $507,374 and has been placed in the agency’s Severe Violator Enforcement Program

Oregon Shipbuilder Cited for Willful and Serious Safety Violations

OSHA cited Vigor Marine, Inc., for 16 willful and serious violations following an inspection in response to employee complaints.

The company faces proposed penalties totaling $370,358.

Inspectors determined that the company:

  • Allowed employees to work on energized circuit boxes;
  • Failed to conduct fit-testing and medical evaluations before providing respirators;
  • Did not implement an effective hearing conservation program; and
  • Failed to ensure employees wore seat belts when operating powered industrial trucks.

The company was cited for similar violations at its facilities in Oregon and Alaska.

Cal/OSHA Cites Contractor for Exposing Workers to Fall Hazards

California OSHA issued two citations and $146,004 in penalties to roofing contractor Petersen-Dean, Inc., for exposing workers to fall hazards.

Inspectors determined that the company failed to correct unsafe conditions and work practices, and provide fall protection for workers on a sloped roof. The company was previously cited for these violations in 2013, 2016, and 2017.

Washington Cites Company After Workers Suffer Serious Injuries

The Washington Division of Occupational Safety and Health issued 26 citations and $253,320 in fines to National Products, Inc., for failing to protect workers from burns and amputation hazards.

One worker had several fingers amputated by an unguarded and improperly maintained trimming press, and another worker suffered burns from carrying molten aluminum without adequate personal protective equipment.

The company was previously cited for these same violations and is considered a severe violator.

OH Manufacturer Facing Hefty Fines in Finger Amputation Case

ArtiFlex Manufacturing is facing $213,411 in proposed penalties after a worker suffered a partial finger amputation.

OSHA inspected the Wooster, Ohio company and determined ArtiFlex exposed its workers to amputation hazards.

OSHA states, “Employers are required to install and maintain machine guards to protect workers from amputation hazards.”

Because the agency cited the company for similar violations at the same location in 2016, the company has been placed in OSHA’s Severe Violator Enforcement Program.