OSHA Levies More than $100,000 in Penalties against Columbus Steel Castings

OSHA has cited Columbus Steel Castings Co. in Columbus with proposed penalties totaling $102,000 for alleged serious and repeat violations of federal workplace safety and health standards.

Columbus Steel Castings has been cited with four repeat violations, with proposed penalties of $62,500, for failure to enforce hazardous energy control, apply a lock on an energy isolation device, to guard the point of operation on a jag press, inadequate protection against welding rays, airborne overexposures to silica, and failure to implement engineering or administrative controls for silica overexposures. OSHA issues a repeat violation when an employer has been cited in the past and the agency finds a substantially similar violation of any of the company's facilities in federal enforcement states.

The company also has received citations for 12 serious violations, with proposed fines of 39,500. Some of the violations address the company's failure to provide adequate training on hazardous energy control; flashback protection on fuel-gas torches; to have procedures for selection of respirators; to provide inspection, maintenance, and cleaning procedures for respirators; overexposure prevention to hexavalent chromium; and proper training for airborne exposures to cadmium and lead. A serious citation is issued when there is substantial probability that death or serious physical harm could result from a hazard about which the employer knew or should have known.

"It is extremely important that companies ensure safety and health procedures are initiated and enforced, especially while working with hazardous materials such as hexavalent chromium or when working around high energy equipment," said Deborah Zubaty, OSHA's area director in Columbus. "OSHA's goal is to make sure workers return home, safe and healthy, at the end of every shift."

OSHA's comprehensive safety and health inspection was conducted as a follow-up to a 2006 inspection in which Columbus Steel Castings Co. was cited by OSHA for 60 violations of federal workplace safety and health standards resulting in the issuance of $257,000 in penalties. The company has been inspected 12 times since 2003, including the 2006 inspection. The company was inspected 71 times between 1972 and 2003 under its former name, Buckeye Steel Castings Co.

For more information, visit www.osha.gov.

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