April 30, 2015
Lack of proper safety controls leads to loss of worker's 3 fingers
in metal press at stamping company, inspectors find
OSHA cites Wellington Stamping for 7 serious violations, proposes penalties of $49K
WELLINGTON, Ohio – The life of a 23-year-old man working at a metal stamping company was changed forever when three fingers on his right hand were crushed in a power press in January 2015.
U.S. Department of Labor Occupational Safety and Health Administration inspectors say the incident at Wellington Stamping could have been prevented. They determined the company did not train the worker on safely operating the mechanical press, which also lacked adequate safety mechanisms. Their investigation of the incident, in which the man suffered the loss of his right pointer, middle and ring fingers while clearing a machine jam, produced seven violations for Wellington Stamping, with proposed penalties of $49,000.
"Our investigation found this young man's serious injuries could have been prevented if his employer had complied with OSHA safety standards. The company must correct these discrepancies," said Kimberly Nelson, OSHA's area director in Toledo.
OSHA investigators also found that Wellington Stamping failed to train workers in energy control procedures, such as powering off and affixing locking devices. Doing so prevents the machine from turning on unexpectedly and causing a dangerous amputation hazard*.
In total, seven serious citations were issued. An OSHA violation is serious if death or serious physical harm could result from a hazard an employer knew or should have known exists.
The incident was reported to OSHA by Shiloh Industries Inc., operator of Wellington Stamping, under new self-reporting requirements that went into effect Jan. 1. Those requirements mandate that employers must report amputation injuries within 24 hours.
Each year, more than 200,000 American workers suffer cuts, lacerations and amputations from operating parts of dangerous machinery. Inspectors often find that various mechanical power press brakes and other machines used in manufacturing plants lack adequate safety mechanisms. Machine hazards continue to be among the most frequently cited OSHA standards.
Shiloh Industries has 15 business days from receipt of its citations and penalties to comply, request an informal conference 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 Toledo Area Office at 419-259-7542.
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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Release Number: 15-611-CHI
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