An Oklahoma plating manufacturer is facing over three dozen safety violations carrying $341,000 in fines for exposing workers to deadly levels of hexavalent chromium, a cancer-causing health hazard.
Reasons for fine: failure to
◾provide PPE for workers exposed to chromium
◾demarcate regulated area where chromium was sprayed
◾prevent ingestion of food and drinks and absorption of cigarettes in chromium-regulated areas
◾properly train workers exposed to the facility’s chromium, caustics and corrosives
◾provide adequate walking and working surfaces
◾provide separate locker space and storage for street and protective clothing
◾perform PPE hazard assessments
◾guard power transmission belts
◾failing to fit test employees for respirators and implement a respiratory program
◾inform workers of their chromium exposure records
◾provide adequate washing facilities
◾label chemical containers
Inspectors said workers were exposed to the chemical in the spray painting and dip tank operation areas and in the lunchroom and smoking areas of the Grove plant.
Moving machine parts have the potential to cause severe workplace injuries, such as crushed fingers or hands, amputations, burns, or blindness. Safeguards are essential for protecting workers from these preventable injuries. Any machine part, function, or process that may cause injury must be safeguarded. Machine Guarding Focuses on recognizing and controlling common amputation hazards associated with the operation and use of certain types of machines.
MAKE SURE ALL MACHINERY IS EQUIPT WITH SAFETYGUARDS!!!!
OSHA and the National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH) have put new Recommended Practices in place to protect temporary workers in the workplace.
Concern for the well-being of temporary workers has been a concern for OSHA and NIOSH lately. Their newly released Recommended Practices provide ways for staffing agencies and host employers to work together to provide a safe environment for these workers.
The Recommended Practices include:
◾Staffing agencies and host employers must work together to ensure the safety of these workers — both are responsible for these workers’ well-being.
◾Before working with a new host employer, staffing agencies should evaluate work sites, identify safety issues and the types of training temporary workers will need.
◾Agency staff should be trained to recognize safety hazards so they can work with the host employer to ensure that proper measures are taken to prevent an incident.
◾Be sure that staffing agencies and host employers know and understand each others’ safety plans. This way, they can mutually hold one another to the highest standard when it comes to the safety of temporary workers.
◾The host employer and agency should create a contract stating who will be responsible for each aspect of the workers’ safety. This means defining the workers’ job requirements, who will provide the necessary PPE, and agreeing on everyone’s rights and responsibilities.
◾Host employers and agencies should have open communication about any incidents that happen on the job. Both groups should agree on an incident reporting system so that all information is communicated quickly and effectively.
◾Both the staffing agency and host employer are responsible for providing adequate safety training for temporary workers. It is the responsibility of the host employers to train temporary workers as they would any other permanent staff.
OSHA’s focus on protecting temporary workers doesn’t stop at the companies hiring the short-term help. Inspectors are also paying close attention to staffing agencies.
SeaWorld says it won’t appeal an OSHA fine connected with the death of an animal trainer working with killer whales. This means OSHA’s use of the General Duty Clause (GDC) in this case will stand. The U.S. Supreme Court won’t get to consider it. The agency uses the GDC when there are no specific federal safety regulations that pertain to a workplace hazard. Such was the case with trainers working with killer whales at SeaWorld theme parks. SeaWorld had argued that OSHA’s use of the GDC in the February death of trainer Dawn Brancheau was overly broad. The OSHRC did downgrade the citation from willful to serious and reduced the total fines from $75,000 to $12,000. SeaWorld had been opposing in court. Arguing before the U.S. Court of Appeals in Washington, DC, that using barriers to abate the hazard of contact between the trainers and whales as suggested by OSHA would create additional hazards for its employees. It also argued not allowing trainers in the water with whales during shows would hurt its business. The court upheld the OSHRC decision. The trainers haven’t been back in the water with the whales since the appeals court upheld the OSHRC