Arkansas Aluminum Firm Fined $154,000 for Repeat, Health Violations

The safety inspection found 10 serious and five repeat safety violations. A health investigation yielding nine serious violations was opened Nov. 15, 2010, based on a referral from the safety inspection.

OSHA has cited Pocahontas Aluminum Co. Inc. with 19 alleged serious and five alleged repeat safety and health violations at the company's facility in Pocahontas, Ark. Proposed penalties total $154,770.

"This is not the first time this company has exposed its employees to workplace safety and health hazards," said Carlos Reynolds, OSHA's Little Rock Area Office director. "OSHA's standards must be followed to avoid accidents and injuries."

OSHA's Little Rock office opened a planned safety inspection on Oct. 29, 2010, at the company's facility under the agency's National Emphasis Program on Fabricated Metal Products. The safety inspection found 10 serious and five repeat safety violations. A health investigation yielding nine serious violations was opened Nov. 15, 2010, based on a referral from the safety inspection.

The serious safety violations include failing to provide proper machine lockout/tagout procedures, repair damaged work platforms, and adequately store ladders. Health violations include failing to provide employees with proper personal protective equipment, adequately assess the facility under the hearing conservation program, and include emergency response personnel under the bloodborne pathogens program.

Repeat safety violations include failing to provide proper guards for the mechanical power press and power transmission equipment. Pocahontas Aluminum was cited in 2006 for the same violations and assessed penalties of $18,750 at that time.

Pocahontas Aluminum employs about 85 workers and manufactures aluminum window and door products.

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