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The U.S. Department of Labor's Occupational Safety and Health Administration has cited Durasol Corporation for 13 alleged serious violations of workplace health and safety standards at its Amesbury, Mass., manufacturing plant. The manufacturer of hard gum erasers faces a total of $43,800 in proposed fines.
OSHA's inspection found a variety of emergency response, respirator, electrical and chemical hazards. The citations were issued for a lack of an emergency action plan, inadequate employee training in responding to emergencies, inadequate respirator training, lack of respirator fit-testing and medical evaluation, failure to evaluate respiratory hazards, unmarked exit routes, unlabeled containers of chemicals, severely corroded electrical equipment, an extension cord used in place of permanent wiring, inadequately guarded floor holes, missing stair rails, and an uninspected and improperly located emergency eyewash/shower.
OSHA issues a serious citation 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.
"These citations represent a cross section of deficiencies that, left uncorrected, expose workers to chemical and electrical hazards and to the consequences of not knowing how to respond in the event of an emergency," said Jeffrey Erskine, OSHA's area director for Essex and Middlesex counties in Massachusetts. "Prompt and effective corrective action by the company is warranted to ensure the health and well-being of the workers."
Durasol Corp. has 15 business days from receipt of its citations and proposed penalties to comply, meet with the OSHA area director or contest the findings before the independent Occupational Safety and Health Review Commission.