Aug. 3, 2015
Worker suffers severe burns at Bellevue, Ohio, plastic company
OSHA proposes penalties of more than $48K for 10 safety and health violations
Employer name: Wilbert Inc., Belmont, North Carolina
Investigation site: Wilbert Inc., operating as Wilbert Plastic Services
635 Southwest Street
Investigation findings: The U.S. Department of Labor's Occupational Safety and Health Administration's Toledo office issued eight serious and two other-than-serious safety and health violations to the plastic injection molding company on July 28. The company manufactures parts for Ford and Whirlpool and employs about 3,000 workers company-wide and 325 at the Ohio site.
OSHA initiated an investigation after a 36-year-old employee suffered burns to his face, eyes, and hands while troubleshooting and cleaning a mold located within a plastic injection press. Investigators found procedures had not been taken to prevent the machine from releasing hot plastic during maintenance resulting in the injury.
"Each year thousands of workers are injured because manufacturers fail to recognize machine hazards and prevent workers from injuries during the manufacturing process. No worker's shift should end with a visit to the hospital," said Kim Nelson, OSHA's area director in Toledo.
The serious violations include:
- Not providing personal protective equipment to protect against burns and falls
- Failing to comply with machine safety procedures such as the use of locking devices and de-energizing equipment
- Not training employees about machine safety procedures and hazards
- Exposing employees to fall hazards while accessing parts of presses
- Not maintaining floors in dry condition
OSHA issued two other-than-serious violations for failing report a hospitalization within 24-hours and to fill out OSHA injury and illness logs correctly.
Proposed Penalties: $48,900
View citations: http://www.dol.gov/opa/media/press/osha/OSHA20151489fs.pdf
To ask questions; obtain compliance assistance; file a complaint or report amputations, eye loss, 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 Office at 419-259-7542.
# # #
Release Number: 15-1489-CHI
U.S. Department of Labor news materials are accessible at http://www.dol.gov. The department's Reasonable Accommodation Resource Center converts departmental information and documents into alternative formats, which include Braille and large print. For alternative format requests, please contact the department at (202) 693-7828 (voice) or (800) 877-8339 (federal relay).