Laceration, Fire Hazards Add Up to $49,210 in Fines for N.Y. Manufacturer

Eight serious violations involve a storage cabinet for flammable liquids that did not meet fire resistance requirements, an auger that did not have its power source locked out to prevent its activation while employees cleared jams, and blocked and unmounted fire extinguishers.

OSHA has cited Met Weld International LLC of Altamont, N.Y., for 21 alleged violations of workplace safety and health standards. The company, which manufactures and engineers power generation process systems, faces a total of $49,210 in proposed fines following inspections of its plant that begun in April.

"The inspection identified a cross section of hazards that expose employees to the dangers of fire, lacerations, insufficient respiratory protection, hearing loss, being struck by a vehicle, and being caught in unexpectedly activated machinery," said Edward Jerome, OSHA's area director in Albany. "It is imperative that the employer address these conditions promptly and take effective steps to prevent them from recurring."

Eight serious violations carrying $28,910 in proposed fines involve a storage cabinet for flammable liquids that did not meet fire resistance requirements, an auger that did not have its power source locked out to prevent its activation while employees cleared jams, blocked and unmounted fire extinguishers, a lack of fire extinguisher training, a nonworking horn on a powered industrial truck, an unsecured power press, an unguarded grinder, and the lack of a high temperature or carbon monoxide alarm on a compressor used to supply breathing air to a respirator.

Two repeat violations with $12,600 in fines involve conditions similar to those cited in a 2006 OSHA inspection: a lack of an effective hearing conservation program and not providing medical evaluations and fit-testing for employees using respirators.

Finally, 11 other-than-serious violations with $7,700 in fines involve incomplete or incorrect recording of occupational injuries, tripping hazards, and a missing respirator tag.

"Establishing an injury and illness prevention program in which workers and management continually identify and eliminate hazardous conditions can prevent hazards such as these," said Robert Kulick, OSHA's regional administrator in New York.

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