Region 1 News Release: 10-240-BOS/BOS 2010-093
Tues., March 2, 2010
Contact: Ted Fitzgerald
US Labor Department's OSHA proposes nearly $59,000 in fines against Cheshire, Conn., food distribution warehouse
BRIDGEPORT, Conn. - The U.S. Department of Labor's Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) has cited Bozzuto's Inc. for 25 alleged violations of safety standards at its Cheshire, Conn., food distribution warehouse. The company faces a total of $58,750 in proposed fines.
"These citations address a cross section of mechanical, electrical and exit access hazards that exposed workers to the dangers of electric shock, lacerations, amputation, and being caught in operating machinery or unable to swiftly exit the workplace in the event of a fire or other emergency," said Kang Yi, OSHA's acting area director in Bridgeport. "It is imperative that the company take effective action to ensure that all such conditions are corrected and do not reoccur."
OSHA's inspection found workers unable to open emergency exit doors from inside the workplace; a lack of specific procedures to lock out the power sources for compactors and other machines to prevent their unintended startup during service or maintenance; unguarded grinder, table saw, compactor and other machinery; missing guardrails; no workplace hazard assessment to determine what types of personal protective equipment workers would need; a deficient respiratory protection program; unlabeled lifting slings; improperly stored oxygen cylinders; and several electrical hazards.
These conditions have resulted in OSHA issuing the company 20 serious citations with $55,750 in proposed fines. OSHA issues serious citations when death or serious physical harm is likely to result from hazards about which the employer knew or should have known. The company also has been issued five other-than-serious violations, with $3,000 in fines, chiefly for incomplete recording of injuries and illnesses.
Bozzuto's Inc. has 15 business days from receipt of its citations and proposed penalties to comply, participate in an informal conference with the OSHA area director or contest the findings before the independent Occupational Safety and Health Review Commission. The inspection was conducted by OSHA's Bridgeport Area Office; telephone 203-579-5581. 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.