OSHA fines Florida plant $73,700 for safety violations

RP news wires, Noria Corporation
Tags: workplace safety

The U.S. Department of Labor's Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) has proposed penalties of $73,700 against Arch Aluminum and Glass Company Inc. for one repeat and 10 serious safety violations found at its manufacturing plant in Fort Pierce, Fla., between November 2006 and March 2007.

Inspectors visited the plant as part of OSHA's Site-Specific Targeting Program, which targets the nation's most hazardous workplaces for inspection based on their histories of having high numbers of injury and illness cases.

OSHA proposed one repeat citation, with a proposed penalty of $50,000, for the company's failure to develop and implement lockout/tagout procedures, which are used to prevent machinery from accidental operation while employees are making repairs. The employer already had agreed to implement lockout/tagout procedures at all of its locations during previous OSHA inspections of other company facilities.

"Our inspection of the Fort Pierce plant determined that the employer never implemented its lockout/tagout program at this facility, in spite of earlier agreements with OSHA," said Darlene Fossum, OSHA's area director in Fort Lauderdale. "It is important that companies pursue safety proactively and not wait for OSHA inspectors to discover problems."

OSHA also found 10 serious safety violations resulting in $23,700 in proposed penalties. A serious citation is issued when there is substantial probability that death or serious physical harm could result and the employer knew, or should have known, of the hazard.

Arch Aluminum and Glass has 15 working days to contest the citations and proposed penalties before the independent Occupational Safety and Health Review Commission.

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