Region 2 News Release: NY 142
April 28, 2000
Contact: Chester J. Fultz
TONAWANDA, NEW YORK, HYDRAULIC CYLINDER MAKER CITED BY OSHA
FOR ALLEGED SAFETY VIOLATIONS; $105,750 IN PENALTIES PROPOSED
The U.S. Labor Department's Occupational Safety and Health Administration has cited MDC Acquisition LLC, doing business as Hydraulic Development and Manufacturing Company, 125 Fire Tower Road, Tonawanda, New York, and proposed penalties of $105,750 against the firm for 34 alleged serious violations of OSHA standards. The company has until May 18 to contest the citations.
According to OSHA area director David E. Boyce, the action results from an investigation conducted from November 5 through April 27 in response to a complaint of unsafe conditions at the plant, which manufactures cylinders for brakes and other hydraulic systems.
"Our investigation established that the company had hired a large number of employees in response to an influx of new business," Boyce said. "But the employer did not take the necessary actions to train these workers in the appropriate safety measures or invest in appropriate safeguards.
"Unfortunately, sometimes when businesses expand," Boyce commented, "a decision is made to concentrate more on product than on people."
The alleged serious violations for which the employer was cited included:
- failure to provide training in the use of personal protective equipment, using fire extinguishers, and operation of powered industrial trucks;
- failure to have a lockout/tagout program to prevent the accidental startup of machines during repair or servicing;
- failure to provide adequate flammable-liquid storage facilities;
- failure to carry out frequent inspections of overhead cranes;
- failure to provide adequate machine guarding;
- failure to provide guardrails where employees were exposed to falls;
- failure to provide a hearing conservation program;
- failure to protect employees from exposure to electrical hazards;
- failure to provide screens or shields around arc welding activities to protect other employees from eye injury due to ultraviolet light;
- failure to eliminate ignition sources or provide adequate ventilation in a spray booth;
- failure to provide a respiratory protection program;
- failure to reduce the pressure of compressed air used for cleaning below 30 psi.
A serious violation is defined as a condition which exists where there is a substantial possibility that death or serious physical harm can result.
The investigation was conducted by OSHA's Buffalo area office, located at 5360 Genesee Street, Bowmansville, New York, telephone (716) 684-3891.
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