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OSHA Regional News Brief
Region 1

Please note: As of January 20, 2021, information in some news releases may be out of date or not reflect current policies.


Feb. 17, 2015BOS 2015-029


Employees at Bristol, Connecticut, trash-to-energy plant exposed to
combustible dust, fire, electrical, confined space, other hazards
OSHA proposes $80,100 in fines for Covanta Energy Bristol Inc.

Employer name: Covanta Energy Bristol Inc.

Inspection site: 170 Enterprise Rd., Bristol, Conn. 06010

Date inspection initiated: The U.S. Department of Labor's Occupational Safety and Health Administration began an inspection on Oct. 1, 2014, in response to a complaint.

Investigation findings: OSHA cited the plant for 16 serious violations of workplace safety and health standards. These included: allowing combustible dust to accumulate on ledges, conduits, floors, guardrails, work platforms and catwalks; failing to determine employees' exposure level to ash containing toxic metals such as lead, cadmium and arsenic; inadequate training and protective clothing for an employee performing testing on live electrical parts; inadequate safeguards for employees working in confined spaces; lack of an emergency eyewash for employees working with batteries; as well as fall, fork truck, air pressure and mechanical hazards. A serious violation occurs when there is substantial probability that death or serious physical harm could result from a hazard about which the employer knew or should have known

Proposed Penalties: $80,100.

Quote: "Covanta Energy Bristol Inc. needlessly exposed its employees to the hazards of electrocution, fire, falls, slips and trips, crushing, being trapped or overcome in a confined space, eye injuries and cancer, lung or kidney damage," said Terence McEvily, OSHA's acting area director in Hartford. "It must take effective steps to eliminate these hazards and prevent them from happening again.

Next Steps: Covanta Energy Bristol Inc. has 15 business days from receipt of its citations and proposed penalties to comply, meet with OSHA's area director, or contest the findings before the independent Occupational Safety and Health Review Commission. To ask questions, obtain compliance assistance, file a complaint or report workplace hospitalizations, fatalities or situations posing imminent danger to workers, the public should call OSHA's toll-free hotline at 800-321-OSHA (6742) or the agency's Hartford Area Office at 860-240-3152.

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Media Contacts:

Ted Fitzgerald, 617-565-2075,
Andre J. Bowser, 617-565-2074,

Release Number: 15-239-BOS

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