US Labor Department's OSHA cites Global Pyrotechnic Solutions in
Dittmer, Mo., for 31 violations after 3 workers injured in fireworks plant explosion
ST. LOUIS – The U.S. Department of Labor's Occupational Safety and Health Administration has cited Global Pyrotechnic Solutions Inc., a fireworks manufacturer in Dittmer, for 25 serious and six other-than-serious safety violations after three workers suffered burns caused by an explosion at the company's facility in March.
The employees were transported to local hospitals, and two were treated for serious burns and released. The third employee, who suffered third-degree burns, was hospitalized for approximately 20 days.
"It is imperative that employers who manufacture, sell, display or whose employees work around pyrotechnics recognize potential hazards and take steps to prevent injuries such as the ones that occurred in this case," said Charles E. Adkins, OSHA's regional administrator in Kansas City, Mo. "All employers must take the necessary steps to eliminate hazards from the workplace."
The serious violations relate to hazards associated with the improper handling of explosives, improper storage of flammable liquids and a lack of ventilation in rooms where the liquids are used. Several violations relate to process safety management – which requires managing hazards associated with highly hazardous chemicals – include failing to address safety hazards, provide engineering controls, train workers on emergency shutdown procedures, implement an effective lockout/tagout program to control hazardous energy, guard machines and repair electrical deficiencies. 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. Detailed information on process safety management is available at http://www.osha.gov/SLTC/processsafetymanagement/index.html.
The other-than-serious violations involve a lack of explosives warning signs on storage buildings and transport vehicles, using trucks that are not appropriate for transporting explosives, other issues with process safety management and various respirator deficiencies. 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.
Proposed penalties total $116,900. The citations can be viewed at http://www.osha.gov/ooc/citations/GlobalPyro_279658_0904_12.pdf*.
Global Pyrotechnic Solutions Inc. employs 20 workers. The company has 15 business days from receipt of the citations and penalties to comply, request an informal conference with OSHA's 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 St. Louis Area Office at 314-425-4249.
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 or CD 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.