The Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) has proposed $155,000 in fines against Insulfoam-Columbus in Columbus, Ohio, for alleged repeat, willful and serious violations of federal workplace safety standards following the death of an employee in August 2006.

OSHA opened an inspection after receiving notification that an employee had died after being caught in and crushed by moving machinery that was not properly guarded. Two willful citations were issued alleging the company allowed the practice of bypassing interlock guards and failed to enforce lockout/tagout procedures. A serious violation alleged the lack of an annual lockout audit, and one repeat violation was issued for the lack of lockout/tagout training for employees.

"The tragedy of serious injuries and fatalities resulting from failing to prevent unintended movement of dangerous machinery is made worse by the fact that such hazards are entirely preventable," said Deborah Zubaty, OSHA area director in Columbus.

OSHA had conducted two previous inspections since May 2003 resulting in serious violations of OSHA standards covering lockout/tagout issues, machine guarding, powered industrial trucks and blood borne pathogen regulations.