The U.S. Department of Labor's Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) has cited Dehler Manufacturing Company Inc. in Chicago with 24 serious, four repeat and six other-than-serious violations of federal workplace health standards and has proposed $85,360 in penalties.

OSHA opened its inspection in February after receiving a health hazard evaluation report from the National Institutes of Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH). The ensuing inspection revealed hazards cited as serious which are associated with hearing damage, lack of personal protective equipment, potential exposure to hazardous chemicals and the lack of a hazardous communication program. A serious citation is issued when there is substantial probability that death or serious physical harm could result from a hazard about which the employer knew or should have known.

Repeat violations addressed problems with the respirator program, lack of medical evaluation and fire extinguisher inspections. OSHA issues repeat violations when it finds a substantially similar violation of any standard, regulation, rule or order at any other facilities in federal enforcement states.

"Providing a healthful workplace is a challenge that all employers must be encouraged to meet," said OSHA area director Diane M. Turek of the Chicago North OSHA office.

The company has 15 business days from receipt of the citations to comply, request an informal conference with the OSHA area director or contest the citations and proposed penalties before the independent Occupational Safety and Health Review Commission.