March 25, 2010
Contact: Elizabeth Todd
US Labor Department's OSHA cites Gulf Chemical & Metallurgical Corp.
in Freeport, Texas, for alleged workplace safety violations
FREEPORT, Texas — The U.S. Department of Labor's Occupational Safety and Health Administration has cited Gulf Chemical & Metallurgical Corp. in Freeport for exposing workers to hazardous airborne contaminants at the company's worksite located on Midway Road. Proposed penalties total $50,400.
"This employer exposed its workers to unhealthful working conditions," said Dean McDaniel, OSHA's regional administrator in Dallas, Texas. "If the company had followed OSHA's standards, it is possible employees would not have been exposed to airborne levels of air contaminants."
OSHA's Houston South Area Office began its inspection on Oct. 26, 2009, and found 16 alleged serious violations of workplace safety and health standards that include failing to adequately protect workers from exposure to hazardous air contaminants, train employees on the hazards associated with chemicals in the workplace, provide training with limitations in the use of respirators, properly locate and inspect portable fire extinguishers, provide training in the use of attachments on forklifts and adequately protect employees from electrical hazards. A serious violation is one that could cause death or physical harm about which an employer knew or should have known.
Employers and employees with questions regarding workplace safety and health standards can call OSHA's Houston South Area office at 281-286-0583, its Houston North Area Office at 281-591-2438 or the agency's toll-free hotline at 800-321-6742 to report workplace accidents, fatalities or situations posing imminent danger to workers.
The company has 15 working days from receipt of the citations to comply, request an informal conference with OSHA's Houston South area director or contest the citations and penalties before the independent Occupational Safety and Health Review Commission.
Under the Occupational Safety and Health Act of 1970, employers are responsible for providing safe and healthful workplaces for their employees. OSHA's role is to assure these conditions for America's working men and women by setting and enforcing standards, and providing training, education and assistance. For more information, visit http://www.osha.gov.
U.S. Department of Labor releases are accessible on the Internet at http://www.dol.gov. The information in this news release will be made available in alternate format (large print, Braille, audiotape or disc) from the COAST office upon request. Please specify which news release when placing your request at 202-693-7828 or TTY 202-693-7755. The Labor Department is committed to providing America's employers and employees with easy access to understandable information on how to comply with its laws and regulations. For more information, please visit http://www.dol.gov/compliance.