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Region 1 News Release: 13-442-BOS/BOS-13-36
March 18, 2013
Contact: Ted Fitzgerald    Andre J. Bowser
Phone: 617-565-2075    617-565-2074
Email: fitzgerald.edmund@dol.gov    bowser.andre.j@dol.gov

East Hartford, Conn., auto body shop cited by US Labor Department's
OSHA after inspection finds repeat and workplace hazards
Hoffman Auto Body Shop faces $54,300 in proposed fines

HARTFORD, Conn. – Hoffman Auto Body Shop has been cited by the U.S. Department of Labor's Occupational Safety and Health Administration for nine alleged violations of workplace safety standards at its Connecticut Avenue facility in East Hartford. The auto body repair shop faces proposed fines of $54,300. OSHA's Hartford Area Office began their inspection on Dec. 6, 2012, to verify correction of hazards cited during a 2011 inspection.

In the 2012 inspection, OSHA identified hazards similar to those cited during the 2011 inspection. Specifically, equipment and materials, some of it flammable, were stored near paint spray booths and electric panels. The stored materials limited access to extinguish potential fires, presented fire and shock hazards and impeded cleaning around the booths, which allows potentially combustible materials to accumulate.

These conditions resulted in the issuance of two repeat citations with $40,000 in proposed fines. A repeat violation exists when an employer previously has been cited for the same or a similar violation of a standard, regulation, rule or order at any other facility in federal enforcement states within the last five years.

"The bulk of these fines stem from recurring hazards identified during this latest inspection," said Warren Simpson, OSHA's area director in Hartford. "Workers at the facility remained exposed to potential hazards. This employer needs to take effective action to correct these safety issues and prevent their recurrence."

Additional hazards found include inadequate storage, disposal and cleanup of flammable and combustible materials; unlabeled containers of hazardous chemicals; and an improperly located electrical outlet. These three serious violations resulted in $14,300 in proposed fines. 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.

Hoffman Auto Body Shop has 15 business days from receipt of its citations and proposed penalties to comply, meet with OSHA's area director or contest the findings before the independent Occupational Safety and Health Review Commission.

To ask questions, obtain compliance assistance, file a complaint or report workplace hospitalizations, fatalities or situations posing imminent danger to workers, the public should call OSHA's toll-free hotline at 800-321-OSHA (6742) or the agency's Hartford office at 860-240-3152.

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 or CD from the COAST office upon request by calling 202-693-7828 or TTY 202-693-7755.


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