Region 1 News Release: 11-427-BOS/BOS 2011-111
March 29, 2011
Contact: Ted Fitzgerald
US Labor Department's OSHA cites Volvo Aero Connecticut
with 17 serious safety violations at Newington plant
Airplane engine parts manufacturer faces more than $83,000 in fines
HARTFORD, Conn. – The U.S. Department of Labor's Occupational Safety and Health Administration has cited Volvo Aero Connecticut for 17 alleged serious violations of workplace safety standards at its Newington manufacturing plant. The airplane engine parts manufacturer faces a total of $83,400 in proposed fines for a cross section of hazards identified during a comprehensive OSHA inspection.
"Our inspection found employees exposed to a range of hazards that could result in potentially serious or fatal injuries if not promptly and effectively corrected," said Paul Mangiafico, OSHA's area director in Hartford. "Workers at this plant face the risks of falls, fires, explosions, electrocution, struck-by injuries, chemical exposure and being caught in unguarded operating machinery. For the safety and health of its workers, the company must address these issues so that they do not occur again."
Specific violations cited by OSHA included workers being hoisted on the load hook of an overhead crane; an improperly designed combustible dust collection system; a lack of personal protective equipment; uncovered containers of flammable liquids; improper disposal of combustible rags; failure to conduct air monitoring to determine employees' exposure to hexavalent chromium; unguarded milling machines, belts, pulleys and grinders; and failure to re-evaluate workers' ability to safely operate fork trucks and provide operators with refresher training.
In addition, the company was cited for several electrical safety violations. These included electrical equipment unapproved for a Class II (combustible dust) location, flexible cords used in lieu of permanent wiring, defective electrical equipment, a lack of an electrical safety-related work practices program and failure to provide such training to maintenance employees.
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.
Volvo Aero Connecticut 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. The inspection was conducted by OSHA's Hartford Area Office; telephone 860-240-3152. To report workplace incidents, fatalities or situations posing imminent danger to workers, call OSHA's toll-free hotline at 800-321-OSHA (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 ensure 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.
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U.S. Department of Labor news materials are accessible at http://www.dol.gov. The information above is available in large print, Braille, audio tape or disc from the COAST office upon request by calling 202-693-7828 or TTY 202-693-7755.