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OSHA Regional News Brief
Region 6

Please note: As of January 20, 2021, information in some news releases may be out of date or not reflect current policies.



Feb. 2, 2015


Aircraft maintenance workers exposed to hazardous chemicals
OSHA cites Northrop Grumman Corp. in Lake Charles, La., for eight serious health violations with a penalty totaling $42,000

Employer name: Northrop Grumman Corp.

Inspection site: Lake Charles, La.

Date inspection initiated and what prompted the inspection: The inspection began August 2014 as the result of a complaint, but was expanded to also address the Occupational Safety and Health Administration's National Emphasis Program for Hexavalent Chromium.

Investigation findings: Workers painting and conducting paint removal from aircraft parts are being overexposed to methylene chloride and hexavalent chromium. OSHA cited Northrop Grumman for eight serious health violations for failing to provide engineering controls to keep worker exposure below the permissible exposure levels for these chemicals and for failing to provide adequate respiratory protection and equipment for the painters. 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: $42,000

Quote: "The painters and workers in the vicinity are being exposed to levels of hexavalent chromium and methylene chloride, dangerous chemicals that are known to cause serious illness or death if not corrected," said Dorinda Folse, OSHA's area director in Baton Rouge. "The lack of proper employee protection is unacceptable."

View the citations:

To ask workplace safety and health 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 225-298-5458.


Media Contacts:

Diana Petterson, 972-850-4710,
Juan J. Rodriguez, 972-850-4709,

Release Number: 15-124-DAL

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