Metal Recycler Cited in Workers' Overexposure to Lead, Arsenic

OSHA initiated a December 2011 inspection following a referral from the Pennsylvania State Department of Health indicating that employees had high levels of lead in their blood.

OSHA has cited Abington Reldan Metals LLC with 11 serious safety violations, including overexposing workers to dangerously high levels of lead and arsenic, at the company's Fairless Hills, Pa., facility. OSHA initiated a December 2011 inspection following a referral from the Pennsylvania State Department of Health indicating that employees had high levels of lead in their blood. Proposed penalties total $48,600.

“We're reviewing what they sent us," said Robert Korodan, the company's environmental health and safety manager. "We're taking it very seriously."

The violations include exposing employees to lead and arsenic above the permissible exposure limit as well as failing to implement adequate engineering controls to reduce exposures, ensure floors were cleaned using proper methods, require employees working with lead and arsenic to shower at the end of their work shifts, provide training on the hazards of arsenic and cadmium exposure, provide a designated training room for workers to remove contaminated clothing, provide a written housekeeping program for arsenic and written plans for arsenic and lead exposure control, establish a medical program for workers exposed to arsenic, and provide a regular monitoring program for those workers exposed to lead, arsenic and cadmium.

"Abington Reldan Metals has a responsibility to ensure its employees have a safe working environment, which includes taking all necessary precautions to protect them from exposure to hazardous materials such as lead and arsenic," said Jean Kulp, director of OSHA's Area Office in Allentown. "OSHA is committed to protecting workers, especially when employers fail to do so."

Abington Reldan Metals LLC is a metal recycling plant that employs 86 workers at its Fairless Hills facility.

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