April 12, 2016
OSHA finds dozen violations at Becton, Dickinson and Co.
in Holdrege after two workers suffer finger amputations
Global medical technology cited for machine hazards twice in 2015 at Holdrege
HOLDREGE, Neb. - After two workers suffered partial amputations of their index fingers in separate incidents in October 2015, federal investigators found numerous machines lacked safety guards at the Holdrege facility of Becton, Dickinson and Company, a global medical technology company.
On April 11, the U.S. Department of Labor's Occupational Safety and Health Administration cited the company, widely known as "BD," for one repeat and 12 serious safety violations related to the injuries on Oct. 14 and Oct. 22, 2015, and other hazards found. OSHA previously cited BD for machine hazards at the same facility in April and September 2015. The agency has proposed penalties of $112,700.
"In 2015, a total of 52 Nebraska workers suffered preventable amputation injuries," said Jeff Funke, OSHA's area director in Omaha. "OSHA's common sense safety standards require manufacturers to provide training, safe guards and procedures to prevent workers from coming in contact with the operating parts of a machine. Employers like BD must do more to protect workers from these debilitating injuries."
OSHA's investigation found the company failed to provide:
- Gates on platforms and ladder ways to prevent falls.
- Proper machine guarding to prevent contact with moving parts.
- Protection at a forklift charging station where electrical and fire hazards existed.
- An eye-washing station for employees exposed to corrosive materials.
- Locking and blocking devices to prevent unexpected machine starts and operation.
Since Jan. 1, 2015, OSHA requires all employers to report any severe work-related injury - defined as a hospitalization, amputation or loss of an eye - within 24 hours. The requirement that an employer report a workplace fatality within eight hours remains in force. In the first full year of the program, employers nationwide reported 10,388 severe injuries, including 7,636 hospitalizations and 2,644 amputations.
View current citations here.
Headquartered in New Jersey, BD is a global medical technology company operating in 190 countries with more than 45,000 employees. The company develops, manufactures and sells medical supplies, devices, laboratory instruments, antibodies, reagents and diagnostic products. It serves healthcare institutions, life science researchers, clinical laboratories, the pharmaceutical industry and consumers.
Becton Dickinson Co. has 15 business days from receipt of its citations and penalties to comply, request an informal conference with OSHA's area director in Omaha, or contest the findings before the independent Occupational Safety and Health Review Commission.
To ask questions, obtain compliance assistance, file a complaint, or report amputations, eye loss, 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 Omaha office at 402-553-0171.
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.
Release Number: 16-646-KAN
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