Wylie, Texas, metal extruder cited by US Department of Labor's OSHA for
exposing workers to uncontrolled energy sources, other safety hazards
Extruders Inc. fined $166,000 for 15 safety violations
DALLAS – The U.S. Department of Labor's Occupational Safety and Health Administration has cited Extruders Inc., a division of Atrium Companies Inc. in Wylie, for $166,000 in proposed penalties. The penalties are for 15 safety violations, including one willful, and for failing to protect workers from the inadvertent start-up of machinery during maintenance.
OSHA's Dallas Area Office began its March inspection of the company's Hensley Lane location following complaints about safety hazards. The one willful safety violation was cited for failing to develop written procedures and make them available to workers. A willful violation is one committed with intentional, knowing or voluntary disregard for the law's requirements, or with plain indifference to worker safety and health.
"By failing to provide instructions on how to lockout and tagout service panels, Extruders exposed the workers to possible electrocution hazards," said John Hermanson, OSHA's regional administrator in Dallas. "It's imperative that employers identify and correct potential hazards and uphold their responsibility to provide a safe and healthy workplace."
The 14 serious violations cited include failing to ensure and verify a workplace hazard assessment; provide eye protection to workers with prescription eyeglasses; conduct periodic inspection of lockout/tagout operations; provide lockout/tagout training for affected workers; and ensure the use of specific shift change procedures to prevent serious injuries or fatalities. Other violations include failing to ensure machine guards; legibly mark disconnections of the electrical panel breakers; provide a way to lock an equipment's means of disconnection in the open position; provide training on safe electrical work practices; ensure the de-energization of live electrical parts; ensure only qualified individuals work on electric circuit parts or equipment still energized; and provide workers with electrical protective equipment. 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.
The citations can be viewed at http://www.osha.gov/ooc/citations/Extruders_Inc_898976_0924_13.pdf*
Extruders Inc. is an aluminum extruder that makes windows and door frames. The company has 15 business days from receipt of the citations and penalties to comply, request an informal conference with OSHA's Dallas 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 Dallas Area Office at 214-320-2400.
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, audio tape 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.