The U.S. Labor Department's Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) has cited Gencor Industries for serious safety violations following a fatal accident at the company's Orlando, Fla., facility. The agency is proposing penalties totaling $68,400.
OSHA's investigators determined that the accident occurred when an overhead hoisting hook and plate clamp, attached to a sheet of metal, failed and caused the unsupported metal to fall and pin an employee against a cylinder.
"This tragic event could have been prevented if the company had followed required safety rules and inspected the lifting equipment daily for signs of fatigue," said Les Grove, OSHA's Tampa area director.
OSHA cited the company for failing to: inspect slings and fastenings each day for damage and defects; keep employees clear of suspended loads; and assure that slings were securely attached to loads.
In all, the company received 28 serious citations, with proposed penalties totaling $68,400. Other alleged safety violations included: failing to provide employees with eye protection during cutting and welding operations and fall protection while working in aerial baskets and at heights 10 to 14 foot above ground; exposing workers to amputations from unguarded machinery and electrocutions from damaged or improperly installed electrical equipment; and failing to implement lockout-tagout procedures to ensure that energized equipment was rendered inoperable during servicing and repair.
The company, which designs and manufactures equipment used in asphalt production, has 15 working days to contest the citations and proposed penalties before the independent Occupational Safety and Health Review Commission.