Two workers in St. Augustine, Fla. suffered injuries while cutting into a gas supply pipe with a torch when residual gas ignited inside the pipe and exploded due to the pressure. The March 2014 incident at Indianhead Explorations LLC, doing business as Indianhead Biomass Services, permanently disabling one employee and left the other with a leg injury.
McCleskey Mills Inc. has been cited by OSHA for 28 safety and health violations for exposing workers to amputations, falls and other safety hazards. The agency initiated the February 2014 inspection at the peanut processing plant in Rochelle after receiving a complaint. Proposed penalties total $72,553.
Rust-Oleum Corp., doing business as Synta Inc., was cited by OSHA for 33 serious safety and health violations for exposing full-time and temporary workers to crystalline silica dust, amputation and electrical hazards. OSHA initiated its inspection in February 2014, following a complaint alleging improper storage of material and inadequate forklift training. The proposed penalties total $188,500.
Last week’s decision by OSHA to cite the producers of “Midnight Rider” for willful and serious violations shows that tougher penalties are needed to prevent workplace deaths, according to the National Council of Occupational Safety and Health (National COSH).
Workplace violence injures employees, causes lost work days
August 15, 2014
Two recent cases of OSHA enforcement illustrate how workplace violence can pose a threat to workers in vastly different industries. Corizon Health Inc., which provides medical, dental and psychiatric services to inmates at the Rikers Island correctional facility in New York City, was cited by OSHA for knowingly failing to protect its employees adequately against workplace violence and assault.
Correctional officers and other staff at McDowell medium-security federal prison in Welch, West Virginia were potentially exposed to bloodborne pathogens and other workplace safety and health hazards, according to OSHA, which has issued notices to the Federal Correctional Institution at McDowell, a part of the U.S. Department of Justice Federal Bureau of Prisons.
Disciplining employees for violating safety and health rules is a critical component of any good safety and health program. OSHA's recent policy on employee discipline for violating safety and health rules undercuts the use of such discipline and encourages employees to consider possible claims for retaliation.
Packaging Corporation of America has been cited by OSHA for eight — including five repeat — safety violations for failing to protect workers from amputation and other serious hazards. OSHA initiated an inspection Jan. 21, 2014, after receiving a complaint that workers were reaching in to unjam machines without turning off the machinery.