OSHA News Release - (Archived) Table of Contents|
Region 4 News Release ATL: 02-225
Wed., Nov. 20, 2002
Contact: Jo Anne Burgoyne - Andre Richards
Phone: (404)562-2076 - (770)984-8700 ext 0
OSHA Proposes $88,200 in Penalties for Newnan, Ga., Manufacturer
NEWNAN, Ga. -- The U.S. Department of Labor's Occupational Safety and Health Administration today cited Yamaha Motor Manufacturing Corporation of America for failing to protect workers from electrical hazards that contributed to the death of a worker. The citations carry proposed penalties totaling $88,200.
The fatal accident occurred June 1 at the company's Newnan plant. An employee was working from an extended scissor lift on electrical equipment and power lines that had not been properly labeled and disconnected before work began. The employee was electrocuted when he touched a pair of uninsulated steel pliers to a 277-volt conductor inside a ceiling-mounted electrical junction box.
"Yamaha officials knew machinery and equipment lacked required labels which would have allowed electrical disconnects to be accomplished easily, but took no action to correct the hazard," said Andre C. Richards, OSHA's Atlanta-West area director. "Management's inaction showed an indifference to employee safety that cost a worker his life."
OSHA issued one willful citation against Yamaha, with a proposed penalty of $63,000, for failing to properly label electrical equipment. The agency issues a willful citation when the alleged violation is committed with an intentional disregard of, or plain indifference to, the requirements and rules of the Occupational Safety and Health Act.
The company also received four serious citations with penalties totaling $25,200 for failing to: have adequate procedures in place to render machinery inoperable while maintenance and repair work were performed; designate employees authorized to work on electrical equipment and properly train them; implement safety protocols and procedures for all employees, and ensure that workers used appropriate tools.
A serious citation is issued when there is substantial probability that death or serious physical harm could result and the employer knew or should have known of the hazard.
The company has 15 working days to contest the OSHA citations and proposed penalties before the independent Occupational Safety and Health Review Commission. The inspection was conducted by staff from the OSHA Atlanta-West area office located at 2400 Herodian Way, Suite 250, Smyrna, Ga.; phone: (770) 984-8700.
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