Region 2 News Release: NY 191
September 20, 2000
Contact: Chester J. Fultz
For Release: Immediately
RAHWAY, NEW JERSEY COMMERCIAL LAUNDRY CITED BY OSHA FOR ALLEGED SAFETY AND HEALTH VIOLATIONS: $108,900 IN PENALTIES PROPOSED
The U.S. Department of Labor's Occupational Safety & Health Administration has cited JMB Linen Management LLC, located at 276 Hamilton St., Rahway, New Jersey, and proposed penalties of $108,900 against the firm, alleging two repeat, thirty-two serious, and three other-than-serious violations of OSHA standards.
According to Robert D. Kulick, OSHA area director, the citations resulted from two separate inspections, one safety and one health, conducted from March 20 through August 3, following a complaint alleging that employees were using freight elevator doors without safety interlock devices, exposing them to the danger of falling and being crushed.
Among the alleged serious violations for which OSHA cited the employer are:
- failure to provide safety interlock devices on freight elevators.
- failure to ensure that exits were not blocked.
- failure to implement an existing lockout/tagout procedure
- failure to remove defective forklifts from service.
- failure to properly guard machinery.
- failure to ensure that electrical panels were free and clear.
- failure to cover live parts of electrical equipment.
- failure to use electrical safety devices during employee maintenance operations.
- failure to ensure that employees used proper personal protective equipment when working with chemicals and soiled laundry.
- failure to make the company's blood borne pathogen program available to employees.
- failure to offer the Hepatitis B vaccination to all employees exposed to potential blood borne pathogens.
- failure to properly train employees in the hazards associated with blood borne pathogens.
The alleged serious violations carry a total proposed penalty of $102,600.
OSHA also cited the employer for not providing hand soap and hand towels in the employee lavatories, two alleged repeat violations carrying a total proposed penalty of $5,400. The employer had previously been cited on May 6, 1998 for the same alleged other-than-serious violations.
In addition, the employer was cited for the following alleged other-than-serious violations:
- failure to properly store flammable and combustible materials.
- failure to repair broken fixed stairs.
- failure to ensure that all available toilets were in operating condition.
The alleged other-than-serious violations carry a total proposed penalty of $900.
A repeat violation is one for which an employer has previously been cited for the same, or for a substantially similar violation, and which has become a final order of the Occupational Safety and Health Review Commission. A serious violation is defined as a condition which exists where there is a substantial possibility that death or serious physical harm can result. An other-than-serious violation is a hazardous condition that would probably not cause death or serious physical harm, but would have a direct and immediate relationship to the safety and health of employees.
The investigation was conducted by OSHA's Avenel Area Office, located at 1030 St. Georges Avenue, Suite 205, Avenel, New Jersey 07001, telephone 732-750-3270.
The company has until October 11 to contest the citations.