DOE Cites Battelle Energy Alliance, LLC

The department determined four of the violations stemming from a February 2013 incident were Severity Level I and one was a Severity Level II violation.

The U.S. Department of Energy recently issued a Preliminary Notice of Violation to Battelle Energy Alliance, LLC for five alleged violations of DOE's worker safety and health regulations. According to the agency's June 20 announcement, the violations are associated with a Feb. 11, 2013, test incident in which a BEA researcher suffered second- and third-degree burns at the Idaho National Laboratory Engineering Demonstration Facility. 

The PNOV cites five violations of DOE worker safety and health requirements enforceable under 10 CFR Part 851, Worker Safety and Health Program, in the areas of hazard identification and assessment; hazard prevention and abatement; management responsibilities; pressure safety; and training and information. DOE determined four of the violations were Severity Level I and one was a Severity Level II violation, resulting in a total base civil penalty of $337,500. A Severity Level I violation is a serious violation where the potential for death or serious physical harm could result from a workplace hazard, while a Severity Level II violation is an other-than-serious violation that has a direct relationship to worker safety and health.

"In response to the incident, BEA implemented comprehensive corrective actions to address its own analytical findings and the violations cited in the PNOV. In light of the promptness and extent of BEA's response to the event, and consistent with the factors established in Appendix B to 10 CFR Part 851, General Statement of Enforcement Policy, DOE elected to grant partial mitigation of the base civil penalty. As a result, DOE proposed a total civil penalty of $168,750," the announcement stated.

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