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OSHA News Release – Region 5
U.S. Department of Labor
Region 5 News Release V-319
Date: July 22, 2003
Contact: Brad Mitchell
Amputation, Significant OSHA Fine for Buffalo Grove Firm
CHICAGO, Ill. -- R.G. Ray Corp., a Buffalo Grove, Ill., based manufacturer, is facing $150,300 in fines proposed by the U.S. Labor Department's Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) following an accident on Jan. 20, 2003 in which an employee lost three fingers in an improperly maintained power punch press.
OSHA opened its investigation on Jan. 23 in response to the reported amputation accident. The federal workplace safety and health agency arrived at the plant after receiving information about the amputation and concerns that workers believed such an accident might reoccur. The subsequent inspection found considerable problems with a dangerous and willful lack of machine guarding and power press maintenance as well as serious problems with electrical hazards, periodic inspection of power presses and other point of operation hazards.
"This company was aware of the hazards associated with power press operations and chose to ignore them," said U.S. Secretary of Labor Elaine L. Chao. "OSHA's commitment is to prevent the occurrence of such injuries and we are prepared to help employers achieve that goal. However, when employers fail to do their part in this effort, they'll find us ready to fully enforce our standards."
R.G. Ray Corp. employs approximately 350 full-time workers in the manufacture of specialty automotive clamps. OSHA previously cited the company for violations of workplace safety regulations for mechanical power press operation in March, 2000, and for not reporting an amputation injury in 1999.
According to OSHA Area Director Diane Turek, Des Plaines, Ill., the company has 15 working days from receipt of the citations to appeal before the independent Occupational Safety and Health Review Commission.
OSHA is dedicated to saving lives, preventing injuries and illnesses and protecting America's workers. Safety and health add value to business, the workplace and life. For more information, visit www.osha.gov.
U.S. Labor Department news releases are accessible on the Internet at www.dol.gov/ebsa. The information in this release will be made available in alternative format upon request (large print, Braille, audio tape or disc) from the COAST office. Please specify which news release when placing your request. Call 202-693-7773 or TTY 202-693-7755.
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