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Employing over 1.1 million workers in the United States, the plastics industry represents a substantial portion of the American workforce. Various safety and health concerns exist throughout the plastics industry, ranging from raw material manufacturing to plastics processing.

OSHA's mission is to prevent work-related injuries, illnesses, and deaths. Since the agency was created in 1971, occupational deaths have been cut by 62% and injuries have declined by 42%. One way OSHA accomplishes this mission is by the development and enforcement of standards that address hazards in the workplace.

How do I find out about employer responsibilities and worker rights?

Workers have a right to a safe workplace. The law requires employers to provide their employees with safe and healthful workplaces. The OSHA law also prohibits employers from retaliating against employees for exercising their rights under the law (including the right to raise a health and safety concern or report an injury). For more information see www.whistleblowers.gov or worker rights.

OSHA can help answer questions or concerns from employers and workers. To reach your regional or area OSHA office, go to OSHA's Regional & Area Offices webpage or call 1-800-321-OSHA (6742).

Small businesses may contact OSHA's free on-site consultation services funded by OSHA to help determine whether there are hazards at their worksites. To contact free consultation services, go to OSHA's On-site Consultation web page or call 1-800-321-OSHA (6742) and press number 4.

Workers may file a complaint to have OSHA inspect their workplace if they believe that their employer is not following OSHA standards or that there are serious hazards. Workers can file a complaint with OSHA by calling 1-800-321-OSHA (6742), online via eCompliant Form, or by printing the complaint form and mailing or faxing it to the local OSHA area office. Complaints that are signed by an worker are more likely to result in an inspection.

If you think your job is unsafe or if you have questions, contact OSHA at 1-800-321-OSHA (6742). Your contact will be kept confidential. We can help. For other valuable worker protection information, such as Workers' Rights, Employer Responsibilities, and other services OSHA offers, visit OSHA's Workers' page.

Highlights

  • Machine Guarding. OSHA eTool. Focuses on recognizing and controlling common amputation hazards associated with the operation and use of certain types of machines.
    • Plastics Machinery. Discusses guidelines and safety measures for horizontal injection molding machines. A virtual tour of a horizontal injection molding machine is also available.
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