OSHA seeks $50K in penalties vs. pallet manufacturer

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 $50,200 against Major Wood Products LLC, a manufacturer of wood pallets.

The violations were discovered during an inspection of the company's Carrollton, Ga., facility in May 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 injuries and illnesses.

"Employers must focus on workplace safety and not ignore dangerous situations," said Andre Richards, director of OSHA's Atlanta-West Area Office.

The company was cited with 13 serious safety and health violations carrying a total of $32,200 in penalties. These include employees using machines lacking safety guards, exposing employees to excessive noise without providing regular audiograms, exposing employees to electrical hazards from ungrounded equipment and inappropriate use of extension cords.

Three repeat violations with $18,000 in penalties were proposed for operating with unguarded floor openings that could allow employees to fall into production equipment, not following proper lockout procedures to prevent employees from being caught in moving equipment, and not providing employees with adequate training in recognizing hazardous energy sources. OSHA issues a repeat citation when an employer previously has been cited for a substantially similar violation and that citation and its penalty have become final.

The company has 15 working days from receipt of the citations to contest them and the proposed penalties before the independent Occupational Safety and Health Review Commission.


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