OSHA CITES FURNITURE COMPANY FOR MACHINE GUARDING VIOLATION

October 18, 2001

OSHA has cited Telescope Casual Furniture of Albany for exposing employees to serious injury by failing to provide guards on bending machines. Proposed penalties total $49,500.

An alleged willful citation was issued to the company after an inspection conducted from April 10 to July 23, following complaints of unsafe working conditions. The inspection revealed two employees suffered injuries in which their hands were crushed, requiring partial amputation of their fingers.

"Proper machine guarding would have prevented this accident," said John Tomich, OSHA's area director in Albany.

A willful violation is defined by OSHA as one committed with an intentional disregard for, or plain indifference to, the requirements of the OSH act and regulations.

The investigation was conducted by OSHA's Albany area office. The company has until October 26 to contest the citation.


OSHA CITES RIVERSIDE DIVISION OF PENN TRAFFIC COMPANY FOR EXPOSING EMPLOYEES TO HIGHLY HAZARDOUS CHEMICALS

Failure to address and correct several serious violations issued during an August 2000 inspection has prompted OSHA to conduct a follow-up investigation at the Penn Traffic Company's Riverside Division in DuBois, Pa. As a result, the agency issued 24 serious, one repeat and five other-than serious violations with a total proposed penalty of $144,500.

Penn Traffic is a food retailer that employs 15,000 and operates 220 supermarkets in the eastern United States. The Riverside division, which employs 200 workers, is a refrigerated wholesale food distribution center which uses anhydrous ammonia as a refrigerant.

"Most of the serious violations address this employer's failure to develop and implement an effective process safety management program." said John Stranahan, area director of the Erie OSHA office. "Process safety management is intended to prevent or minimize the consequences of a catastrophic release of toxic, reactive, flammable or explosive hazardous chemicals."

OSHA issued 22 alleged serious health violations with a proposed penalty of $114,500; one alleged repeat health violation with a penalty of $25,000; four alleged other-than serious health violations with no penalty; two alleged serious safety violations with a penalty of $4,000; and one alleged other-than-serious safety violation with a penalty of $1,000. The alleged violations and proposed penalties are:

  • 22 serious health violations - $114,500 -majority of violations address the employers failure to develop and implement an effective safety management program including lack of employee involvement; incomplete process safety information; incomplete process hazard analyses; failure to develop operating procedures; lack of training for process operators; no provisions for contractor safety; failure to perform pre-startup safety review; failure to address mechanical integrity; failure to establish and implement written procedures to maintain the mechanical integrity of process equipment; emergency response plan deficiencies; lack of compliance audits. Non process safety management items include personal protective equipment violations and lack of an eye wash station.

  • 1 repeat violation - $25,000 - concerns the company's failure to train each employee involved in maintaining the on-going integrity of process equipment.

  • 4 other-than-serious citations - no penalty - failure to maintain the contract employee injury and illness log; failure to prepare a report of incident investigation; not establishing a system to resolve incident report finding; no reviewing reports with affected; not retaining such reports for five years.

  • 2 serious violations - $4,000 - violations related to the lockout/tagout program which is designed to avoid the inadvertent or unexpected release of stored energy in machine or equipment

  • 1 other-than-serious violation - $1,000 - concerns the company's failure to provide abatement certification from a previous inspection.

The company has 15 working days to contest the citations before the Independent Occupational Safety and Health Review Commission. The inspection was conducted by the Erie OSHA office.


NEW OSHA 300 LOG and 300A SUMMARY FORMS AVAILABLE ON-LINE

The new OSHA recordkeeping forms are available on-line at http://www.osha-slc.gov/recordkeeping/RKforms.html. This is the final version of the forms to be used for calendar year 2002.

This version differs from previous versions in two major aspects:

  • The new recordkeeping forms have been modified to remove the MSD and hearing loss columns from the OSHA 300 Log of Work-Related Injuries and Illnesses and the OSHA 300A Summary of Work-Related Injuries and Illnesses

  • The instructions accompanying the forms have also been modified to reflect the requirements that will take effect in calendar year 2002.
  • If you downloaded a version of the forms prior to October 12, 2001, you should replace those forms with the version available at the address shown above.


    FARMERS COOP ELEVATOR ASSN. CITED FOR ALLEGED SAFETY VIOLATIONS

    Failure to control grain dust levels and other safety violations have led to citations against a Greenleaf, Kan. grain elevator and feed mill following an explosion that killed one worker and seriously injured another in April.

    OSHA has proposed a penalty of $127,400 for two alleged willful and 16 alleged serious violations against the Farmers Coop Elevator Association.

    The alleged willful violations are for failure to remove potentially dangerous levels of grain dust and failure to develop and implement a written housekeeping program, a preventive measure which helps ensure future protection of workers, according to OSHA Regional Administrator Charles E. Adkins.

    Alleged serious violations include failure to implement a grain elevator machinery preventive maintenance program, failure to provide adequate grain facility training, and failure to implement a lockout-tagout program that ensures machinery will not turn on by accident during maintenance operations. Other alleged serious violations involved electrical, elevated platform, ladder and machine-guarding safety, as well as failure to provide a manlift with an enclosure at least 7 feet in height.

    Farmers Coop Elevator Association has 15 working days from receipt of the citations and proposed penalties to comply with them, hold an informal conference with the OSHA area director or contest them before the independent Occupational Safety and Health Review Commission.


    AMPUTATION OF WORKER'S FINGERS LEADS TO OSHA CITATIONS

    A Hopedale, Mass., plastics firm faces $51,467 in fines after one of its employees lost two fingers in an inadequately guarded machine. OSHA has cited Incase, Incorporated for 28 alleged violations of the Occupational Safety and Health Act, encompassing a wide cross-section of manufacturing hazards.

    OSHA's inspection was initiated in response to a July 19 accident in which a thermoformer machine, used to heat and shape plastic, activated while a worker was removing plastic material from its cutting section.

    "The machine was equipped with an interlocking gate designed to stop the machine's operation when the gate was opened, but our inspection found the company bypassed this necessary safety measure by installing a panel that allowed access to the machine's cutting section," said Ronald E. Morin, OSHA area director for central and western Massachusetts. "This exposed workers to amputation hazards."

    OSHA has cited Incase for an alleged willful violation, defined as a violation committed with intentional disregard of or plain indifference to OSHA standards. The agency has proposed a fine of $35,000 for failing to adequately guard the machine.

    An additional $16,467 in fines were proposed for 25 alleged serious violations involving inadequate machine guarding, electrical hazards, fall hazards, inadequate fire prevention measures and insufficient protective equipment. A serious violation is one in which there is a substantial probability that death or serious physical harm could result, and the employer knew, or should have known, of the hazard.

    The company was also cited for two other-than-serious hazards for failing to post permit required confined spaces and failure to develop and maintain a written hazard communication program. An other-than-serious violation is a condition which would probably not cause death or serious physical harm but would have a direct and immediate relationship to the safety and health of employees.

    Incase, Incorporated employs about 40 workers. The company has 15 working days from receipt of its citations and proposed penaltiio to either elect to comply with them, to request and participate in an informal conference with the OSHA area director, or to contest them before the independent Occupational Safety and Health Review Commission. The inspection was conducted by OSHA's Springfield, Mass., area office.


    TEAMS FROM PA., ILL., AND W. VA. TAKE TOP HONORS IN 2001 MSHA NATIONAL MINE RESCUE CONTEST

    Consol Energy, Inc.'s Enlow Fork Mine of West Finley, Pa., took first place in the 2001 Mine Safety and Health Administration's National Mine Rescue, Bench and First Aid Contest held in Louisville, Ky., last month.

    Energy West Mining's Silver Team, of Huntington, Utah, and the American Coal Company's Galatia Mine of Galatia, Ill., finished second and third, respectively. Thirty-eight teams from 10 states participated in the bi-annual competition sponsored by the U.S. Department of Labor's Mine Safety and Health Administration.

    "The incidents of September 11 have demonstrated to us how absolutely essential are the skills of search and rescue personnel," said Dave Lauriski, assistant secretary of labor for mine safety and health. "Right now, mine rescue teams in Alabama are working around the clock to recover the bodies of their fallen brothers," he added, referring to last month's explosions that killed 13 miners at Jim Walter #5 mine in Brookwood, Ala.

    Galatia Mine took top honors in the bench competition, in which miners who maintain rescue equipment must thoroughly inspect breathing devices that have been purposely tampered with and must correct those defects as quickly as possible. Lodestar Energy Inc. of Clay, Ky., and Mingo Logan Coal Co.'s Mountaineer Mine of Wharncliffe, W.Va., finished second and third, respectively.

    Eastern Associated Coal Corp.'s Southern Appalachia A Team, of Twilight, W.Va., won the first aid competition, followed by Energy West Mining's Silver Team #2 and Eastern Associated Coal Corp.'s Southern Appalachia B Team of Fairview, W.Va. In the first aid contest, competitors tackle real-life medical emergency scenarios.

    Mine rescue competitions require six-member teams to solve a hypothetical mine emergency problem--such as a fire, explosion or cave-in--while judges rate them on their adherence to safety procedures and how quickly they complete specific tasks.

    Mine rescue training began in the United States in 1910, the year the U.S. Bureau of Mines was created. Joseph A. Holmes, the bureau's first director, sought a training vehicle that would provide the mining industry with a cadre of mine rescue specialists who would be prepared to respond to mine disasters. The training efforts evolved into local and regional competitions and, a year later, a national contest.