OSHA Cites Paper Company for Serious, Repeat Hazards

Burrows Paper Corp. faces nearly $300,000 in proposed fines.

OSHA has cited Burrows Paper Corp. based in Little Falls, N.Y., alleging repeat and serious health and safety violations and assessing $298,100 in proposed fines. The inspections that resulted in these violations were completed by OSHA's Syracuse Area Office as part of the agency's Site-Specific Targeting Program.

The inspections occurred because the company posted higher-than-average illness and incident rates in 2009 and 2010, according to OSHA. The inspection at the company's Mohawk Valley Mill found the company responsible for three safety violations, including stairways that lacked railings, papermaking machines that lacked guarding to prevent employee contact with their moving parts, and an electrical hazard related to the use of electrical equipment not approved for the location. In addition, OSHA cited the company for six repeat violations relating to lack of eyewash stations, lack of additional machine guarding, electrical hazards and falls.

The inspection at East Mill found the company at fault for four repeat violations for machines with insufficient guarding and two serious safety violations, which included allegedly exposing workers to combustible paper dust, electrical problems, and an exit light that didn't work. "The proposed fines reflect both the gravity of the cited hazards and the employer's refusal to use required safeguards," said Chris Adams, OSHA's area director in Syracuse. "Workers could have been injured in falls, electrocuted or suffered other injuries because of the employer's repeated failure to ensure a safe workplace."

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