US Labor Department's OSHA cites Waco, Texas,
battery manufacturer with 8 serious health violations
WACO, Texas – The U.S. Department of Labor's Occupational Safety and Health Administration has cited Marathon Norco Aerospace Inc. with eight serious health violations following a July inspection for exposing workers to hazardous materials, such as nickel and cadmium, at the company's facility on Imperial Drive in Waco. Proposed penalties total $41,220.
OSHA's Fort Worth Area Office cited the employer for failing to ensure that cadmium contaminated trash cans containing used personal protective equipment and other contaminated, discarded items were properly labeled; provide effective hazard communication training regarding the dangers of exposure to nickel nitrate and sulfuric acid compounds to new employees; provide proper respiratory protection, such as self-contained breathing apparatus; provide required machine guarding; and repair electrical wiring deficiencies. 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.
"This company exposed its workers to health hazards associated with cadmium dust, which can result in serious respiratory illnesses," said Jack Rector, OSHA's area director in Fort Worth. "It is the employer's responsibility to provide a safe and healthful working environment for employees."
Marathon Norco Aerospace, which manufactures and assembles aircraft batteries, employs approximately 150 workers. The company has 15 business days from receipt of the citations to comply, request an informal conference with OSHA's area director or contest the citations and penalties 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 Fort Worth Area Office at 817-581-7303.
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.
U.S. Department of Labor news materials are accessible at http://www.dol.gov. The information above is available in large print, Braille or CD from the COAST office upon request by calling 292-693-7828 or TTY 292-693-7755.