Electrical, Combustible Dust Hazards Add Up to $83,400 in Fines for Volvo Aero

Specific violations cited by OSHA included workers being hoisted on the load hook of an overhead crane, an improperly designed combustible dust collection system, and a lack of personal protective equipment.

OSHA has cited Volvo Aero Connecticut for 17 alleged serious violations of workplace safety standards at its Newington, Conn., manufacturing plant. The airplane engine parts manufacturer faces a total of $83,400 in proposed fines for a cross section of hazards identified during a comprehensive OSHA inspection.

"Our inspection found employees exposed to a range of hazards that could result in potentially serious or fatal injuries if not promptly and effectively corrected," said Paul Mangiafico, OSHA's area director in Hartford. "Workers at this plant face the risks of falls, fires, explosions, electrocution, struck-by injuries, chemical exposure, and being caught in unguarded operating machinery. For the safety and health of its workers, the company must address these issues so that they do not occur again."

Specific violations cited by OSHA included workers being hoisted on the load hook of an overhead crane; an improperly designed combustible dust collection system; a lack of personal protective equipment; uncovered containers of flammable liquids; improper disposal of combustible rags; failure to conduct air monitoring to determine employees' exposure to hexavalent chromium; unguarded milling machines, belts, pulleys, and grinders; and failure to re-evaluate workers' ability to safely operate fork trucks and provide operators with refresher training.

In addition, the company was cited for several electrical safety violations. These included electrical equipment unapproved for a Class II (combustible dust) location, flexible cords used in lieu of permanent wiring, defective electrical equipment, a lack of an electrical safety-related work practices program, and failure to provide such training to maintenance employees.

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