Texas Battery Recycling Facility Cited for Exposing Workers to Lead

The serious violation was cited for failing to ensure that employees who worked more than eight hours during a workday were not exposed to lead at concentrations greater than the reduced permissible exposure limit.

OSHA has cited Exide Technologies for one serious and one repeat violation at the company's battery recycling facility in Frisco, Texas. OSHA initiated a Feb. 7 safety and health inspection after receiving a referral that alleged workers were being exposed to lead while recycling lead batteries. Proposed penalties total $77,000.

"This company should have implemented engineering and work practice controls to prevent workers from being exposed to hazardous concentrations of lead," said Stephen Boyd, OSHA's area director in Dallas. "OSHA's standards must be followed to prevent injuries and fatalities."

The serious violation was cited for failing to ensure that employees who worked more than eight hours during a workday were not exposed to lead at concentrations greater than the reduced permissible exposure limit.

The repeat violation was cited for failing to prevent exposure to lead at concentrations greater than 50 micrograms per cubic meter of air over an eight-hour period, and failing to implement engineering and work practice controls to reduce and maintain employees' exposure to lead. OSHA cited the company's Fort Smith, Ark., facility in June 2008 and its Laureldale, Pa., facility in January 2009 for similar violations with proposed penalties of $36,600 and $52,400, respectively.

Milton, Ga.-based Exide Technologies, one of the world's largest producers, distributors, and recyclers of lead-acid batteries, employs about 125 workers at its Frisco facility.

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