Employees Needlessly Sickened When Employer Exposes Them to Mercury Poisoning

OSHA has fined Environmental Remediation Services a total of $142,200 for violations.

OSHA has determined that a hazardous materials remediation contractor exposed employees to mercury poisoning and did not provide the proper safeguards while at the General Electric Co. Power and Water Main Plant State Superfund site in Schenectady, N.Y. After employees complained about mercury exposure, an investigation found that several employees inhaled or absorbed excessive levels of mercury vapor or liquid mercury through their skin while removing the substance from the third and fourth floors of the plant.

"Environmental Remediation Services Inc. did not control the mercury exposures. They failed to implement measures such as ventilation, protective equipment or reorganizing work to reduce employees' exposure levels despite the employees' complaints about the exposure. Particularly disturbing is the fact that company managers knowingly refused to perform personal exposure monitoring of employees most likely to have the highest exposure levels. Had the monitoring be done, managers could have identified over-exposures and mitigated or prevented them from occurring in the first place. Instead, these employees were needlessly sickened while simply doing their jobs," said Robert Garvey, OSHA's Albany area director.

OSHA says ERS did not comply with several requirements for protecting employees engaged in hazardous waste operations.

Download Center

HTML - No Current Item Deck
  • Free Safety Management Software Demo

    IndustrySafe Safety Management Software helps organizations to improve safety by providing a comprehensive toolset of software modules to help businesses identify trouble spots; reduce claims, lost days, OSHA fines; and more.

  • The Top 5 Safety and Technology Trends to Watch

    Get the latest on trends you can expect to hear more about in 2019, including continued growth of mobile safety applications, wearable technology, and smart PPE; autonomous vehicles; pending OSHA recordkeeping rulemaking; and increased adoption of international safety standard, ISO 45001.

  • Analyze Incident Data

    Collect relevant incident data, analyze trends, and generate accurate regulatory reports, including OSHA 300, 300A, and 301 logs, through IndustrySafe’s extensive incident reporting and investigation module.

  • Safety Training 101

    When it comes to safety training, no matter the industry, there are always questions regarding requirements and certifications. We’ve put together a guide on key safety training topics, requirements for certifications, and answers to common training questions.

  • Conduct EHS Inspections and Audits

    Record and manage your organization’s inspection data with IndustrySafe’s Inspections module. IndustrySafe’s pre-built forms and checklists may be used as is, or can be customized to better suit the needs of your organization.

  • Industry Safe
comments powered by Disqus

OH&S Digital Edition

  • OHS Magazine Digital Edition - January 2019

    January / February 2019

    Featuring:

    • PREVENTING ERRORS
      Production vs. Safety 
    • EMERGENCY SHOWERS & EYEWASH
      Meeting the Requirements for Emergency Equipment
    • CONSTRUCTION SAFETY
      The State of Contractor Safety
    • FOOT PROTECTION
      The Three Keys to Effective Chemical Management
    View This Issue