Pinnacle Metal Products cited by US Department of Labor's OSHA
after worker suffered serious head injury that resulted in blindness
COLUMBUS, Ohio – McNeil Group, doing business as Pinnacle Metal Products, has been cited by the U.S. Department of Labor's Occupational Safety and Health Administration after a worker suffered a serious head injury that resulted in blindness in one eye and the loss of 50 percent vision in the other. In June, the 42-year-old worker was on a scissors lift while painting steel ceiling beams when the lift caught his head between the beam and the lift's guardrail. The worker did not receive adequate training on operating a scissors lift.
"It's unacceptable that Pinnacle Metal Products failed to train workers properly in the operation of scissor lifts and to ensure adequate guards were in use on machinery in their facility, ultimately resulting in severe injury to this worker," said Deborah Zubaty, OSHA's area director in Columbus. "Companies must implement safeguards and create a culture of safety. Companies must provide workers with adequate training and ensure workers comprehend and understand safety precautions."
OSHA's investigation cited 11 safety violations at the Columbus metal staircase manufacturing facility. One willful violation was cited for failing to provide adequate machine guarding and exposing workers to struck-by and amputation hazards. A willful violation is one committed with intentional, knowing or voluntary disregard for the law's requirement, or with plain indifference to employee safety and health.
Ten serious violations involve failing to train workers adequately in the operation of scissor lifts; mark load ratings on machinery and slings; provide a hazardous energy control program; inspect cranes periodically; require usage of helmets or hand shields during arc welding; and provide machine guarding on grinders and chop saws. 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 total $90,090. The company was previously inspected by OSHA in 2011, resulting in two serious violations.
Pinnacle Metal Products 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 Columbus Area Office at 614-469-5582.
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.