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Region 4 News Release: 08-1229-ATL (198)
Sept. 3, 2008
Contact: Michael Wald
Combustible dust, electrical and machine hazards cited during inspection
SAVANNAH, Ga. -- The U.S. Department of Labor's Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) is proposing $50,400 in penalties for 26 alleged safety and health violations found at the Hi-Tek Rations pet food manufacturing facility in Dublin, Ga.
An OSHA inspection revealed a significant accumulation of dust from the dog food processing area as well as hazardous working conditions. Employees were exposed to fall, electrical and fire hazards. Machine guards were missing and employees worked without proper eye, face and hand protection. In all, OSHA detected 25 serious violations resulting in $49,600 in proposed penalties.
OSHA also cited the plant for one other-than-serious violation, with a proposed penalty of $800, for not maintaining a proper record of injuries and illnesses occurring in 2007.
"Employers are responsible for the maintenance and housekeeping of their facilities, and when they fail in their responsibilities, they put the safety and health of their employees at risk," said John Deifer, OSHA's area director in Savannah.
The company has 15 business days to contest the citations and proposed penalties before the independent Occupational Safety and Health Review Commission. The site was inspected by staff from OSHA's Savannah Area Office, 450 Mall Blvd., Suite J; telephone 912-652-4393.
OSHA operates a vigorous enforcement program, conducting more than 39,000 inspections in fiscal year 2007 and exceeding its inspection goals in each of the last eight years. In fiscal year 2007, OSHA found nearly 89,000 violations of its standards and regulations.
Under the Occupational Safety and Health Act of 1970, employers are responsible for providing a safe and healthy workplace for their employees. OSHA's role is to promote the safety and health of America's working men and women by setting and enforcing standards; providing training, outreach and education; establishing partnerships; and encouraging continual process improvement in workplace safety and health. For more information, visit www.osha.gov.
U.S. Department of Labor releases are accessible on the Internet at www.dol.gov. The information in this news release will be made available in alternate format (large print, Braille, audiotape or disc) from the COAST office upon request. Please specify which news release when placing your request at 202-693-7828 or TTY 202-693-7755. The Labor Department 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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