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July 11, 2022
OSHA enforcement roundup: Spotlight on recent cases

Company cited for fall hazards
OSHA cited a roofing contractor in New Jersey with 7 willful and 11 safety violations discovered at 5 of the company’s worksites in October and December 2021 and in January and March 2022. In every inspection, OSHA found the company did not provide workers doing sheathing and framing work on roofs with fall protection, as the law requires. The agency also identified violations related to workers exposed to damaged ladders, unsafe use of ladders, and electrical hazards. Finally, inspectors found the company failed to provide eye and head protection and train employees on forklift use.
Penalty: $793,290 fine

Refusal to correct hazards leads to fines
A roofing and siding contractor in Maine was cited with three egregious, willful violations for not providing guardrails, safety nets, personal fall arrest systems, or other safeguards. OSHA also cited the employer for five serious violations and one other-than-serious violation for not providing employees with a training program about fall hazards; ensuring ladder siderails were extended 3 feet above the upper landing surface; providing employees with a ladder safety training program; ensuring employees wore head protection when working below roofing operations; and maintaining OSHA 300 illness and injury records.
Penalty: $501,376 fine

Employees suffer severe injuries in explosion
Following a well explosion in North Dakota on November 4, 2021, OSHA cited an oil company with six willful, three serious, and two other-than-serious safety violations. The explosion permanently disabled one worker and left two others with serious injuries. The workers suffered shrapnel injuries when a perforating gun detonated as workers assembled a blasting cap on it to send down a well. Inspectors found that the company failed to equip vehicles transporting explosives with at least two fire extinguishers located near the driver’s seat; ensure safe and consistent disposal or reuse of empty containers and paper fiber packing materials used to wrap explosive materials; and ensure the vehicles were always attended. Inspectors also noted the vehicles lacked safety placards indicating the presence of explosive materials.
Penalty: $453,982 fine

Company cited for lack of machine guarding
A concrete polymer manufacturing company in Texas was cited with 1 willful and 25 serious violations following an investigation after a temporary employee suffered serious injuries after being struck by a large mold. Inspectors also determined that the employer's poor housekeeping exposed workers to airborne concentrations of respirable crystalline silica. In addition to the lack of machine guards and silica exposure, the company was cited for failing to provide proper machine guarding on a rotating table used to pour concrete into the molds; exposing workers to slip and trip hazards in the production area; failing to provide adequate energy control procedures or sufficient lockout/tagout devices; failing to provide the correct respirators and not performing annual fit testing on employees; not making eyewash stations available in some areas where they may be needed; not implementing a process safety management program; and using slings compromised with concrete buildup to lift large objects.
Penalty: $400,902 fine

Contractor cited following employee’s fatal injury
Following an employee’s fatal injury after he was pulled into a hot asphalt silo as he tried to remove debris from a conveyor system, OSHA cited a construction contractor in Oklahoma with several willful citations. Inspectors found that the company failed to develop and use procedures for controlling hazardous energy when servicing or cleaning the asphalt conveyor system and did not train workers adequately on requirements for controlling hazardous energy. In addition to the willful citations, OSHA cited the company for permitting unguarded pulleys, chains, and sprockets on walking and working surfaces; failing to apply energy isolation devices; missing handrails on stairways; and uncovered holes in the floor of walking-working surfaces.
Penalty: $370,347 fine

Food manufacturer cited for fall hazards
A frozen food manufacturer in New Jersey was cited with 36 violations following the investigation into the fatal fall of a contractor after the person fell 11 feet while using a scissor lift to replace a freezer drain. OSHA’s investigation found a damaged and inoperable snap hook on the lift’s safety chain and that the company did not inspect the lift before work began. OSHA also found the company exposed workers to amputations and lacerations from unguarded or inadequately guarded machinery; explosion hazards from accumulations of combustible flour dust on equipment, floors, and surfaces throughout the plant; confined space hazards when entering a wastewater pit to service a water meter; hexavalent chromium hazards during welding operations; chemical burns from caustic chemicals due to inaccessible decontamination showers and eyewash stations; being struck by forklifts operated by untrained employees; and numerous electric shock hazards.
Penalty: $368,513 fine

Repeat violations lead to fines
OSHA cited a metal fabricator in Texas for repeatedly exposing employees to fall, machine, and other safety hazards after receiving notification from the employer that a worker was treated at a medical facility after suffering second-degree burns to his left hand. The company was cited for two repeat and serious violations for a lack of fall protection and a lack of point-of-operation guarding on machinery; failure to use lockout/tagout procedures; a lack of fire protection; failure to inspect fire extinguishers periodically; and electrical hazards. OSHA also found that the company failed to fit test its employees to wear respirators when entering permit-required confined space areas; review permit-required confined spaces annually; and complete entry permits before allowing workers to enter such spaces.
Penalty: $364,078 fine

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