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Region 5 News Release: 14-148-CHI
Feb. 4, 2014
Contact: Scott Allen      Rhonda Burke
Phone:       312-353-6976
Email: allen.scott@dol.gov      burke.rhonda@dol.gov

US Department of Labor's OSHA cites Cleveland metal company for repeat
violations, including lead exposure; $61,600 in proposed fines

CLEVELAND – The U.S. Department of Labor's Occupational Safety and Health Administration has cited Victory White Metal Co. for 12 safety and health violations at its Cleveland lead products manufacturing facility. Proposed penalties total $61,600. Five repeat violations include allowing workers to be exposed to lead above permissible levels.

"It's unacceptable that Victory White Metal Co. failed to correct problems identified previously and continues to allow workers to be exposed to excess lead, which can cause long-term health problems," said Howard Eberts, OSHA's area director in Cleveland. "Companies must implement safeguards, create a culture of safety and protect workers from the hazards that exist in their facilities."

Five repeat violations involve failing to:

  • Ensure workers were not exposed to lead above permissible exposure limits.
  • Use engineering controls to lower employee exposure to lead.
  • Have work rests in place and properly adjusted on grinders.
  • Have tongue guards in place and properly adjusted on grinders.
  • Have covers in place on electrical equipment.

A repeat violation exists when an employer has been cited previously 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 same violations were cited in 2009 at this facility.

Six serious violations involved lack of machine guarding on lathes, cutoff machines, belts, pulleys, chains and sprockets; failing to close unused openings in circuit breaker panels; not requiring employees exposed to lead to shower at the end of shifts; and failing to secure cylinders of compressed gas to prevent tipping.

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.

One other-than-serious violation was issued for failure to conduct periodic, annual evaluations of documented lockout procedures. An other-than-serious safety violation is one that has a direct relationship to job safety and health, but probably would not cause death or serious physical harm.

Victory White Metal Co. has 15 business days from receipt of its citations and penalties to comply, request an informal 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 Cleveland Area Office at 216-447-4194.

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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