Florida Firm Fined $105,000 for Repeat Saw Hazards, 9 Serious Violations

OSHA is proposing $105,000 in penalties against Trussway Ltd.'s Orlando, Fla., plant. The company, which makes structural building products, has seven manufacturing facilities and two sales and design offices in the United States. An OSHA inspection in December 2008 revealed three repeat, nine serious, and seven other-than-serious violations of OSHA standards.

The three repeat violations with $70,000 in proposed fines address hazards associated with improperly guarded radial arm saws; radial arm saws extending past the table edge; and a radial arm saw not returning to its starting position when the handle was released. OSHA cited the company's Acworth, Ga., plant in 2007 for failing to adequately guard the radial saw blades, and it cited the company's Chandler, Ariz., plant in 2006 for the other two hazards.

The nine serious violations, carrying $35,000 in proposed penalties, address hazards associated with hearing conservation, lockout/tagout of accidental energy start-up, machine guarding, electricity and hazard communication.

The other-than-serious violations address OSHA recordkeeping, personal protective equipment, respiratory protection, and lockout/tagout. The agency determined that neither death nor serious physical harm was likely to result from these hazards, so no monetary penalties have been proposed, but the company is required to make the required changes to bring it into compliance with OSHA standards.

"The penalties being proposed are larger because the company had been warned of these violations at two of its locations but chose not to make the needed corrections at all of its plants," said Les Grove, director of OSHA's Area Office Tampa, Fla., the office inspected the Orlando manufacturing facility. "We expect companies to be proactive toward worker safety and not wait for an OSHA inspection before coming into compliance."

Trussway has 15 working days from receipt of the citations to comply, request an informal conference with the OSHA area director in Tampa, or contest the citations and proposed penalties before the independent Occupational Safety and Health Review Commission.

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