GA company cited after worker crushed to death (4/26)
April 26, 2011
The death of an employee who was crushed by a 1500-lb. steel frame led to an OSHA investigation of Don Park USA LP, which ended with 42 safety and health violations against the Georgia-based sheet metal fabricator.
"Exposing workers to life-threatening safety and health hazards is unpardonable," said William Fulcher, director of OSHA's Atlanta-East Area Office. Fulcher noted that many of the hazards Don Park was cited for are easily corrected.
The October, 2010 death of a worker resulted in one serious violation, for failing to exercise caution or planning when moving heavy, unstable loads in a vertical position.
The company has received citations for 29 other serious safety violations, including hazards associated with forklifts lacking seatbelts, machinery lacking guards to protect workers from amputations, lifting equipment not designed or tested for the loads being moved, numerous electrical deficiencies exposing workers to possible shocks, and a lack of training for employees in lockout/tagout procedures and the control of hazardous energy. Additionally, an emergency exit was locked, exit routes were obstructed and inadequately lighted, and employees lacked training in the use of forklifts.
One serious health violation was cited for allowing employees to operate plasma cutting equipment without adequate personal protection equipment.
Seven other-than-serious violations include failing to notify the agency of a fatality within eight hours of the event, properly store gasoline and a gasoline-oil mix, visually inspect fire extinguishers at least monthly, subject fire extinguishers to an annual maintenance check, conduct daily inspections of forklifts, label liquefied propane gas cylinders to identify the chemical content and label same cylinders to identify the hazardous nature of the chemicals.
Four other-than-serious health violations include failing to complete OSHA logs in sufficient detail, train employees in a hazard communication program, establish a respiratory protection program and provide employees who voluntarily wear respirators with sufficient information about the respirators as required by OSHA regulations.
Don Park is engaged in sheet metal work for custom fabrication of air conditioning ducts and air distribution systems. Proposed penalties total $127,200.