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Region 4 News Release: 13-2488-ATL (12)
Jan. 23, 2014
Contact: Michael D'Aquino    Lindsay Williams
Phone: 404-562-2076    404-562-2078
Email: d'aquino.michael@dol.gov    williams.lindsay.l@dol.gov

Teen Challenge of Florida cited by US Labor Department's OSHA
for 25 safety and health violations; more than $228,000 in fines proposed

PENSACOLA, Fla. – Teen Challenge of Florida Inc., an international rehabilitation program, has been cited by the U.S. Department of Labor's Occupational Safety and Health Administration with 25 safety and health violations following an inspection of the company's facilities in Pensacola. OSHA initiated the July 2013 inspection after receiving a complaint alleging safety and health hazards. Proposed penalties total $228,600.

"This employer willfully disregarded worker safety by exposing workers to amputation hazards," said Brian Sturtecky, OSHA's area director in Jacksonville, Fla. "The hazards found during our inspection must be eliminated from this workplace immediately."

Three willful violations, with $162,000 in penalties, involve the employer exposing workers to amputations hazards by not providing machine guarding on the hand-fed ripsaws, the cutting heads of the routers and the abrasive wheels on the grinding wheel. A willful violation is one committed with intentional knowing or voluntary disregard for the law's requirements, or with plain indifference to worker safety and health.

Eighteen serious safety and health violations, with $66,600 in penalties, include failing to: provide workers first aid training in case of an emergency; provide a suitable eyewash facility; close unused openings in boxes, raceways, cabinets and equipment cases; have uniform step heights on a standard stairway and keep exit routes unobstructed. Workers were also exposed to numerous instances where the machines had no guarding, several electrical deficiencies were present and various tripping hazards were observed. 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.

Four other-than-serious violations were also cited for the company's failure to: illuminate exit signs; certify forklift operators as competent to operate powered industrial trucks safely; establish a respiratory protection program; and have forklift nameplates and markings in place and in legible condition. No monetary penalties were assigned for these violations. An other-than-serious violation is one that has a direct relationship to job safety and health, but probably would not cause death or serious physical harm.

The citations can be viewed at http://www.osha.gov/ooc/citations/Teen_Challenge_of_Florida_922044_0121_14.pdf*

Teen Challenge of Florida in Pensacola offers assistance to adults ages 18 and older who are struggling with drug addiction, alcoholism and other life-controlling issues. The company has 15 business days from receipt of the citations and proposed penalties to comply, request a conference with OSHA's area director or contest the findings before the independent Occupational Safety & 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 Jacksonville Area Office at 904-232-2895.

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.


* Accessibility Assistance: Contact OSHA's Office of Communications at 202-693-1999 for assistance accessing PDF materials.


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