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Region 3 News Release: 11-801-PHI (eta 11-059)
June 7, 2011
Contact: Joanna Hawkins      Leni Uddyback-Fortson
Phone: 215-861-5101      215-861-5102
Email: hawkins.joanna@dol.gov      uddyback-fortson.lenore@dol.gov

US Department of Labor's OSHA cites Summit Point, W.Va.,
wood pallet manufacturer for workplace safety hazards

SUMMIT POINT, W.Va. – The U.S. Department of Labor's Occupational Safety and Health Administration has cited Burch Wood Products Inc. for exposing workers to safety hazards at its Summit Point facility. Proposed penalties total $58,200.

OSHA initiated an inspection on Feb. 1 as part of its National Emphasis Program on Amputations. As a result, the company was cited for 18 serious violations.

"Each of these violations left workers vulnerable to hazards that could cause serious injuries and possible death," said Prentice Cline, director of OSHA's area office in Charleston, W.Va. "It's vital that the company correct these hazards to protect its employees."

Violations include the company's failure to provide machine guarding; provide personal protective equipment; develop or implement a written hazard communication program; provide training for employees who operate powered industrial trucks; properly maintain lavatories and portable fire extinguishers; provide employees with training on the proper use of portable fire extinguishers; ensure compressed air used for cleaning purposes was reduced to less than 30 pounds per second; develop procedures and provide training on potentially hazardous energy; properly dike, label and outfit diesel and kerosene fuel tanks with proper safety instruction signs; implement an effective hearing conservation program for employees exposed to noise at 85 decibels or more; and provide a faceplate for outlet boxes. 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.

Burch Wood Products Inc. manufactures wood pallets and has 12 employees.

The company has 15 business days from receipt of the citations to comply, ask for an informal conference with OSHA's area director or contest the citations and proposed penalties before the independent Occupational Safety and Health Review Commission. The investigation was conducted by OSHA's Charleston office; telephone 304-347-5937.

To report workplace incidents, fatalities or situations posing imminent danger to workers, call the agency's toll-free hotline at 800-321-OSHA (6742).

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.

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U.S. Department of Labor news materials are accessible at http://www.dol.gov. The information above is available in large print, Braille, audio tape or disc from the COAST office upon request by calling 202-693-7828 or TTY 202-693-7755.


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