Sheet Metal Fabricator Faces $273,000 in Fines for Asbestos Hazards

OSHA has cited Blackstone Business Enterprises Inc. of Jamestown, N.Y., for 18 alleged willful and serious violations of OSHA standards for failing to protect contract employees against asbestos hazards. Specifically, the sheet metal and structural steel fabricator faces $273,000 in proposed fines for failing to provide required safeguards for temporary employees who were hired to remove asbestos-containing insulation from steam pipes at the plant.

"The sizable fines proposed here reflect the fact that this company knew several of these critical safeguards were necessary yet chose not to provide them," said Arthur Dube, OSHA's area director in Buffalo, N.Y. "Inhalation of asbestos fibers by workers may lead to lung disease and other disorders. That is why it is essential that effective protective measures be in place and in use whenever necessary. One means of identifying and preventing hazards such as these is to develop and maintain an effective safety and health management system."

OSHA said Blackstone did not perform air monitoring to determine the level of asbestos exposure nor did it provide workers with respirators, protective clothing, and asbestos training. These conditions resulted in four willful citations, carrying $224,000 in proposed fines. OSHA defines a willful violation as one committed with plain indifference to or intentional disregard for employee safety and health.

Additionally, the company was issued 14 serious citations, with $49,000 in fines, for failing to determine the presence, location, and quantity of asbestos-containing material; establish a regulated work area; properly clean and dispose of asbestos-containing material and contaminated clothing; inform employees and tenants of the asbestos removal; label asbestos-containing insulation and trash bags; and have the work overseen by a competent person. OSHA issues serious citations when death or serious physical harm is likely to result from hazards about which the employer knew or should have known.

The company has 15 business days from receipt of the citations to comply, request an informal conference with OSHA's area director in Buffalo, or contest the citations and penalties before the independent Occupational Safety and Health Review Commission. Detailed information on asbestos is available on OSHA's Web site at www.osha.gov/SLTC/asbestos/index.html and www.osha.gov/SLTC/asbestos/construction.html.

Download Center

HTML - No Current Item Deck
  • Free Safety Management Software Demo

    IndustrySafe Safety Management Software helps organizations to improve safety by providing a comprehensive toolset of software modules to help businesses identify trouble spots; reduce claims, lost days, OSHA fines; and more.

  • Comply with OSHA’s Electronic Recordkeeping Requirements

    Collect relevant incident data and generate accurate OSHA 300, 300A, and 301 regulatory reports, including 300A CSV files for easy electronic submission to OSHA.

  • Complete Online Safety Training Courses

    Deliver state-of-the art, online safety training courses to your organization with IndustrySafe Training Management Software. Generate reports to track training compliance and automatically notify learners of upcoming or overdue classes.

  • Easy to Use Safety Inspection App

    Conduct inspections on the go with IndustrySafe’s mobile app. Complete safety audits at job sites and remote locations—with or without web access.

  • Track Key Safety Performance Indicators

    IndustrySafe’s Dashboard Module allows organizations to easily track safety KPIs and metrics. Gain increased visibility into your business’ operations and safety data.

  • Industry Safe
comments powered by Disqus