OSHA seeks $251K fine vs. Provident Pharmaceuticals

RP news wires, Noria Corporation
Tags: workplace safety

The U.S. Department of Labor's Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) has cited Provident Pharmaceuticals LLC in Colorado Springs a total of $251,500 in proposed penalties for alleged willful and serious violations of safety and health standards.

A comprehensive investigation of the company, which manufactures pharmaceutical tablets and syrups, began August 16, 2006, after the company did not adequately address a complaint related to alleged employee exposure to air contaminants or an allegation that employees were covered in dust while performing work in the manufacturing area and when leaving the work area. Citations were issued for seven serious violations with a proposed penalty of $17,500, six willful violations with a proposed penalty of $234,000 and one other violation with no penalty.

"Employers must provide a safe and healthful working environment and ensure that all employees are protected from hazardous conditions," said John Healy, OSHA area office director in Englewood, Colo. "This employer is well aware of the standards that will protect employees from the hazards we found during our inspection, yet did not comply with them."

The alleged serious health violations include employee exposure to hazardous levels of methscopolamine nitrate (MSN), an inadequate respiratory protection program, a lack of eye/face protection, housekeeping and sanitation deficiencies, unguarded rotating shafts, confined space hazards, lockout/tagout violations, unguarded live electrical parts, lack of electrical cord strain relief and a lack of a chemical hygiene plan.

The alleged willful safety violations address a fall hazard, lack of personal protective clothing, lack of forklift training, inadequate machine guarding, improper electrical receptacles used in wet or damp locations and the lack of chemical hazard information training. The other alleged violation is for recordkeeping deficiencies.

Provident Pharmaceutical has 15 working days from receipt of the citations to comply with them, request and participate in an informal conference with the OSHA area director or contest them before the independent Occupational Safety and Health Commission.

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