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Region 6 News Release: OSHA-02-139
Fri., Aug. 9, 2002
Contact: Diana Petterson or Elizabeth Todd
Phone: (214) 767-4776, Ext. 222 or 221
Exposing Employees to Falls and Various Safety Hazards Brings
$153,500 in Fines to Lancaster, Texas, Firm
DALLAS -- Exposing employees to hazards associated with noise, unguarded machines, improper electrical wiring and falls from elevation have resulted in $153,500 in proposed fines against American Homestar Corp. in Lancaster, Texas.
The mobile home manufacturer, doing business as Oak Creek Homes, employs about 170 workers at this site and was cited with 28 alleged serious and two alleged repeat violations following an OSHA inspection that began Feb. 6 under OSHA's Site Specific Targeting Program. Under the program manufacturing work sites were selected for inspections based on high rates of lost workday injuries.
American Homestar was cited with 28 alleged serious violations for failing to protect employees from falls, emergency exit problems, lack of guarding for various pieces of power woodworking equipment, improper training for forklifts, electrical problems, noise and chemical exposures and fire hazards associated with spray applications of coatings. A serious violation involves a substantial probability that death or serious physical harm could result and the employer knew or should have known of the hazard.
Two alleged repeat violations were cited for failing to provide employees with personal protective equipment necessary to prevent falls and to prevent head injuries. A repeat violation is issued when an employer has been cited for an identical or substantially similar condition within the past three years.
"An increase in workplace injuries and accidents warrants an OSHA inspection," says Kathryn Delaney, OSHA area director in Dallas. "As safety problems increase, so does the number of employees being hurt."
Employers or workers who have questions concerning safety and health may contact the OSHA Dallas area office at (214) 320-2400 or contact OSHA's toll-free hotline number at 1-800-321-6742 to report workplace accidents, fatalities or situations posing imminent danger to workers.
American Homestar has 15 working days from the receipt of the citations to either comply, request an informal conference with the Dallas OSHA area director, or contest the citations and proposed penalties before the independent Occupational Safety and Health Review Commission.
U.S. Labor Department news releases are accessible on the Internet at www.dol.gov.
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