Region 5 News Release: 10-527-CHI
May 24, 2010
Contact: Scott Allen
US Labor Department's OSHA proposes more than $60,000 in penalties
against Waukesha, Wis.-based Baird Display for 19 safety violations
WAUKESHA, Wis. The U.S. Department of Labor's Occupational Safety and Health Administration has cited KBRK Inc., doing business as Baird Display in Waukesha, with $60,750 in proposed penalties for alleged willful and serious violations of federal workplace safety standards.
As a result of a January 2010 inspection, OSHA has issued a willful citation to the company with a proposed penalty of $35,000. OSHA discovered that employees were bypassing safety switches in order to reach into running machinery to un-jam it without shutting down the machine. A willful violation is one committed with intentional, knowing or voluntary disregard for the law's requirement, or plain indifference to employee safety and health.
OSHA also has issued the company 18 serious citations with proposed penalties of $25,750. Some of the alleged violations include: failure to provide guardrails and other fall protection from platforms; to establish a lockout/tagout energy control program; to produce procedures for controlling potentially hazardous energy sources on equipment or provide proper training; and to have proper guarding on machinery or rotating shafts. An OSHA violation is serious if death or serious physical harm can result from a hazard an employer knew or should have known exists.
"There is no excuse for a company to disregard the safety and welfare of its workers by not following the OSHA safety guidelines," said OSHA Area Director George Yoksas in Milwaukee, Wis. "Those who ignore safe practices and OSHA regulations are inviting tragedy into the lives of their workers."
The company, which manufactures displays and employs 68 people at its Waukesha factory, has 15 business days from receipt of its citations and penalties to comply, request an informal conference with OSHA's area director or contest the findings before the independent Occupational Safety and Health Review Commission. To report workplace accidents, fatalities or situations posing imminent danger to workers, call OSHA's toll-free hotline at 800-321-6742.
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.