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Region 4 News Release: 13-1630-ATL (214)
Aug. 26, 2013
Contact: Michael D'Aquino    Lindsay Williams
Phone: 404-562-2076    404-562-2078
Email: d'aquino.michael@dol.gov    williams.lindsay.l@dol.gov

US Department of Labor's OSHA cites Flowery Branch, Ga.,
manufacturer for repeat and serious safety violations

FLOWERY BRANCH, Ga. – The U.S. Department of Labor's Occupational Safety and Health Administration has cited Koswire Inc., a manufacturer of steel wire, for one repeat and four serious safety violations following a June inspection at the company's facility in Flowery Branch. The agency initiated an inspection after receiving a complaint. Proposed penalties total $60,805.

The repeat violation, with $38,500 in penalties, involves the employer failing to provide workers performing cleaning operations with training on energy control procedures. 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 facility in federal enforcement states within the last five years. The company received a citation for a similar violation in November 2010 at this facility.

Four serious safety violations, with $22,305 in penalties, involves the employer failing to ensure workers performing cleaning operations use lockout/tagout procedures, ensure usage of lockout/tagout devices, protect workers from exposure to electrical hazards by not using a metallic box as intended by the manufacturer and permit sufficient access to an electrical panel. 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.

"This employer has an extensive OSHA history, yet continues to expose workers to lockout/tagout and electrical hazards that could cause serious injury," said Bill Fulcher, director of OSHA's Atlanta-East Area Office. "It is imperative that management immediately eliminate workplace hazards to protect its employees."

Korea-based Koswire draws steel wire that is later used for the production of springs in various products, such as pens and spray cans. The company has 15 business days from receipt of the citations to comply, request an informal conference with OSHA's Atlanta-East area director or contest the citations and penalties 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 Atlanta-East office at 770-493-6644.

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 216-893-7828 or TTY 216-893-7755.


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