US Department of Labor's OSHA fines pipe manufacturer in Little Rock,
Ark., $88,000 for exposing workers to safety and health hazards
LITTLE ROCK, Ark. – The U.S. Department of Labor's Occupational Safety and Health Administration has cited Welspun Tubular LLC for failing to protect its employees from safety and health hazards at its Little Rock facility. Proposed penalties total $88,000.
"This company put its workers' safety and health at risk by exposing them to a variety of hazardous working conditions," said Carlos Reynolds, director of OSHA's Little Rock Area Office. "OSHA's safety standards must be followed to avoid injuries and fatalities."
OSHA's Little Rock office initiated a safety and health inspection on Aug. 3, 2010, at the company's facility on Frazier Pike. OSHA has issued citations for 16 serious and one other-than-serious safety violation, and five serious and two other-than-serious health violations. The Mumbai, India-based company is a worldwide pipe manufacturer that employs more than 20,000 workers globally, with about 265 workers at the Little Rock facility.
Serious safety violations include failing to protect workers from struck-by hazards, determine load capacities of cranes, provide a self-closing fire door, provide the required machine guarding equipment and ensure lockout/tagout procedures were followed to de-energize electrical equipment. Proposed penalties for safety violations total $65,000.
Serious health violations include failing to identify respiratory hazards, provide training in hazard communication and provide hepatitis B vaccinations for employees exposed to blood-borne pathogens or other infectious materials. A serious citation is issued 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 for the health violations total $23,000.
The other-than-serious safety violation is for failing to provide fork truck maintenance. The other-than-serious health violations are for failing to adequately complete the OSHA 300 logs with detailed information on work-related injuries and illnesses. An other-than-serious violation is one that has a direct relationship to job safety and health, but probably would not cause death or serious physical harm.
The company has 15 business days from receipt of the citations to comply, request an informal conference with OSHA's area director in Little Rock or contest the citations and penalties before the independent Occupational Safety and Health Review Commission.
Employers and employees with questions about workplace safety and health standards can call OSHA's Little Rock Area Office at 501-224-1842 or the agency's toll-free hotline at 800-321-OSHA (6742) to report workplace incidents, fatalities or situations posing imminent danger to workers.
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 assure 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, audio tape or disc from the COAST office upon request by calling 202-693-7828 or TTY 202-693-7755.