New York Paperboard Mill Issued 61 Citations

Carthage Specialty Paperboard faces $357,445 in penalties for more than 60 safety and health violations.

A New York-based paperboard mill announced its plan to contest findings that it exposed employees to more than 60 health and safety hazards, creating an unsafe work environment. OSHA in Syracuse issued a total of $357,445 in penalties to Carthage Specialty Paperboard after discovering many serious safety hazards including more than 20 instances of machinery lacking proper safety guards to prevent employees from the risk of amputation.

In addition to missing safety guards, machinery did not have safety locks to prevent an accidental startup during maintenance. Officials also discovered that metal catwalks – some as high as 13 feet – did not feature restraints to help protect people from falling and employees did not receive required training or personal protective equipment to work on electrical systems with up to 2,300 volts, which could put them at serious risk of electrocution.

Other citations were issued for workers entering confined spaces without prior atmospheric testing or means to rescue persons overcome by fumes, and for exposing employees to struck-by hazards when the company failed to inspect cranes and hoists.

OSHA opened its inspection of Carthage Specialty Paperboard Inc., on Dec. 27, 2016, in response to an allegation of unsafe working conditions.

"The violations found during this investigation put employees at serious risk of injury or even worse," said OSHA Area Director Christopher Adams in a news release. "This is a significant number of hazards for a single workplace. Carthage Specialty Paperboard must implement corrective measures to protect their employees' safety and health."

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