Alabama Smelting Plant Cited for LOTO, Electrical Hazards

OSHA cited 17 serious safety violations, including failing to use lockout/tagout procedures of energy sources, guard open-sided floors and platforms, and provide standard railings for fixed stairways.

OSHA has cited Imperial Aluminum's Scottsboro, Ala., smelting plant for 20 safety violations following an October 2010 inspection. Proposed penalties total $76,500.

OSHA cited 17 serious safety violations, including failing to use lockout/tagout procedures of energy sources, guard open-sided floors and platforms, provide standard railings for fixed stairways, mark doorways or passages along an exit route, ensure fire extinguishers were readily available, provide machine guarding, remove a front end loader from service when repairs were needed, perform periodic inspections of crane hoists, keep aisles clear and free from debris, protect electrical conductors from abrasions, ensure unused openings in electrical panels were effectively closed, and provide covers for junction boxes. 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.

The company also was cited for three other-than-serious violations: failing to complete OSHA 300 logs, certify a personal protective equipment hazard assessment, and document the inspection of lockout/tagout procedures. An other-than-serious violation is one that has a direct relationship to job safety and health, but probably would not cause death or serious physical harm.

"This company put its workers' safety at risk by exposing them to a variety of hazardous working conditions," said Roberto Sanchez, OSHA's area director in Birmingham. "OSHA's safety standards must be followed to avoid injuries and fatalities."

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