OSHA has cited Coastal Plating Co. with 16 safety violations at its Corpus Christi facility after an employee learning how to operate a blast cabinet was struck by a gas compressor power cylinder when it exited a cabinet. The worker died from injuries sustained in the May incident.
"It is the employer's responsibility to find and fix workplace safety violations and to ensure the safety of its workers. Coastal Plating Co. failed to do so and that cost a worker his life. OSHA will not tolerate such neglect," said Michael Rivera, OSHA's Corpus Christi area director.
Some of the 15 serious safety violations cited involve failing to:
- Ensure workers are protected from being struck by unsecured equipment.
- Conduct annual crane inspections.
- Inspect hooks utilized on overhead cranes.
- Ensure the use of personal protective equipment when chromium electroplating work is being done.
- Provide respiratory protection for workers overexposed to chromium.
- Provide emergency eyewash stations and showers.
- Monitor workers exposed to both lead fume dust and to guard floor openings.
In the past five years, Coastal Plating has been inspected twice. An inspection in 2008 resulted in three citations after a worker suffered a foot amputation. A 2010 complaint inspection resulted in the issuance of four citations.
The proposed penalties total $49,700. Coastal Plating has 15 business days from receipt of the citations and penalties to comply, request an informal conference with OSHA's Corpus Christi area director, or contest the findings before the independent Occupational Safety and Health Review Commission.