OSHA News Release - (Archived) Table of Contents|
Region 3 News Release: 04-191-PHI (osha-010)
Date: February 18, 2004
Contact: Leni Uddyback-Fortson
Office: (215) 861-5102
MONACA, Pa. -- The U.S. Department of Labor's Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) has cited Beaver Valley Heat Treating Inc., for alleged deficiencies in maintaining overhead cranes and is proposing more than $144,000 in penalties. The company, a heat-treating facility that processes steel bars and other steel shapes, employs 30 people at its Monaca site.
"This employer did not live up to its obligation to keep its equipment in safe working order," said U.S. Secretary of Labor Elaine L. Chao. "This Administration has set new records for protecting American workers, and this significant $144,250 fine demonstrates how seriously we take health and safety violations."
OSHA initiated an inspection in August, responding to a complaint about improper storage of acid, defective forklifts and unsafe overhead cranes. The company was cited for three alleged willful violations, with a penalty of $105,000 and 30 alleged serious violations, with a penalty of $39,250.
Willful citations were issued for failure to implement a preventative overhead crane maintenance program based on manufacturer's specifications, failure to make repairs or provide replacements for defective overhead cranes and failure to ensure employees use the proper parts while operating overhead cranes and not position themselves under the loads.
Alleged serious violations include: improper storage of sulfuric acid; defective fork lifts; lack of ventilation; lack of a respirator program, including employee training and fit testing; lack of eye wash/shower facilities near acid operations; use of defective slings; lack of personal protective equipment; lack of employee training in confined space entry procedures for dip tanks and furnaces; and lack of machine guarding.
Willful violations are those committed with an intentional disregard of, or plain indifference to the Occupational Safety and Health Act and regulations. Serious violations are those in which a substantial probability that death or serious physical harm could result from a hazard about which the employer knew or should have known.
The company has 15 working days from the receipt of the citations to decide to comply, to request an informal conference with the OSHA area director, or to contest the citations and proposed penalties before the Independent Occupational Safety and Health Review Commission. OSHA's Pittsburgh area office at 1000 Liberty Ave., conducted the inspection. The telephone number is (412) 395-4903.
The Labor Department's Occupational Safety and Health Administration is dedicated to saving lives, preventing injuries and illnesses, and protecting the health and safety of America's workers. In fiscal year 2003, OSHA conducted almost 40,000 inspections, and more than half focused on high-hazard industries. For more information, visit www.osha.gov.
U.S. Labor Department releases are accessible on the Internet at <http://www.dol.gov>. The information in this news release will be made available in alternate 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) 693-7765 or TTY (202) 693-7755. The U.S. Department of Labor is committed to providing America's employers and employees with easy access to understandable information on how to comply with its laws and regulations. For more information, please visit www.dol.gov/compliance.
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