New Jersey company fined $237,600 following deadly explosion
The company is a subsidiary of Acetylene Supply Company, Inc., headquartered in Woodbridge, N.J. The Perth Amboy site employs 15 workers to fill, re-qualify and recondition acetylene cylinders.
OSHA, which initiated its investigation Jan. 25 in response to a report from Perth Amboy police, cited the company for three willful violations with $126,000 in proposed penalties and 37 serious violations with $111,600 in proposed penalties.
The willful citations were issued for failure to:
- update process hazard analysis;
- perform inspections and tests on covered processes to maintain mechanical integrity; and
- maintain required documentation about inspections and testing of equipment.
Serious violations included failure to:
- design, construct and test the acetylene system;
- assure safe, sealed storage of gasoline;
- provide proper storage of flammable gases and liquids; and
- provide safe storage and use of a portable propane heater inside the production building.
Serious citations also were issued for inadequate inspection and servicing of fire extinguishers; lack of clear space around a paint spray booth and proper ventilation during mixing of flammable paints; failing to address human factors that create worksite hazards; not conducting all appropriate testing before workers enter a permit-required confined space; failing to identify specific equipment covered in the lockout/tagout program; and lack of hazard communication training.
The company has 15 working days to contest the citations.