US Department of Labor's OSHA cites San Antonio-based Berridge
Manufacturing for safety violations; nearly $132,000 proposed in fines
SAN ANTONIO – The U.S. Department of Labor's Occupational Safety and Health Administration has cited Berridge Manufacturing Co. with 17 violations for exposing workers to multiple safety hazards at the company's facility on Fratt Road in San Antonio. An inspection, initiated on Aug. 30, 2011, was conducted as part of the agency's Site-Specific Targeting Program for industries with high injury and illness rates. Proposed penalties total $131,670.
Eight serious violations include failing to ensure workers were provided with fall protection while working from the tops of tanks; keep floors and surfaces clear to eliminate tripping hazards; ensure that equipment was free from electrical hazards; provide the required machine guarding for vertical belts and pulleys; and inspect overhead cranes and hoists, wire ropes and hooks. 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.
Five repeat violations involve failing to protect workers from unguarded and unprotected horizontal belts, pulley assemblies and horizontal shafts on furnace motors; ensure that openings on electrical equipment were effectively closed; and provide proper relief strain for electrical cords. A repeat violation exists when an employer previously has been cited for the same or a similar violation of a standard, regulation, rule or order at any other facility in federal enforcement states within the last five years. Similar violations were cited in 2007.
"Repeat violations mean that workers are exposed to the same hazards over and over again," said Jeff Funke, the agency's area director in San Antonio. "Berridge Manufacturing has a responsibility to ensure that employees are protected from possible injuries and illnesses by correcting these hazards immediately."
Four other-than-serious violations were issued for failing to adequately describe occupational injuries and illnesses on OSHA 300 logs, properly certify the OSHA 300A summary form, review the energy control program on an annual basis and ensure that electrical motors had legible markings indicating their electrical classification and division. 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 citations can be viewed at http://www.osha.gov/ooc/citations/BerridgeManufacturing_315627323_0229_12.pdf*.
The company, which manufactures metal roofing components and employs about 150 workers, has 15 business days from receipt of the citations to comply, request an informal conference with OSHA's San Antonio Area Office 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 San Antonio office at 210-472-5040.
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, audiotape or disc from the COAST office upon request by calling 202-693-7828 or TTY 202-693-7755.
* Accessibility Assistance: Contact OSHA's Office of Communications at 202-693-1999 for assistance accessing PDF materials.