Employees at a Wisconsin battery company were exposed to airborne lead at levels 11 times the permissible exposure limit, according to OSHA, which has cited C & D Technologies for two repeated and six serious violations.

OSHA inspected the facility, and determined that 14 employees were exposed to extremely high lead levels. The company failed to implement sufficient controls to prevent exposure; monitor ventilation for the presence of lead; post warning signs in work areas that exceeded the permissible exposure limit; provide respiratory protection; install machine guarding; and guard floor holes. OSHA cited the company for similar violations in 2010.

C & D Technologies faces proposed penalties of $147,822.

“Employers are required to continually evaluate their facilities for hazards, and use the proper safety controls and equipment to keep their worksites safe and healthful,” said Chris Zortman, OSHA Milwaukee Area Director. “This company failed to protect their employees from the serious risks of lead exposure.”