Articles | Cases

OSHA watch

New resources on upcoming changes to reporting requirements

A video and a wallet card detail upcoming changes to employers' incident reporting requirements that go into effect January 1, 2015.

Local Emphasis Program focuses on hazardous chemicals in Nebraska

A Local Emphasis Program (LEP) targeting Nebraska employers using various hazardous chemicals was relaunched. The LEP focuses on general-industry establishments in which employees may be exposed to regulated chemicals such as formaldehyde or methylene chloride. Targeted worksites will be in specific industries with a history of violating health standards, including funeral homes, chemical and product manufacturing plants, printing facilities, and outpatient care centers.

Fact sheets on tube and coupler scaffolds available

The first fact sheet addresses the planning and design of tube and coupler scaffolds and the second addresses the erection and use.

Retailers reminded to keep workers safe during major sales events

Letters have been sent to major retailers, retail associations and fire associations to remind employers about the potential hazards involved with managing large crowds at retail stores during the holiday season when sales events attract a higher number of shoppers. Retailers are encouraged to use the safety guidelines outlined in the fact sheet Crowd Management Safety Guidelines for Retailers.

Wallet card on hazard identification

Another new wallet card, "OSHA's Hazard Identification Training Tool", advertises a new training tool designed to educate businesses about the hazard identification process using realistic workplace simulations.

New web resource for residential construction employers on fall protection

To assist employers in selecting effective fall protection methods to protect workers in residential construction, a new website provides details about equipment highlighted in OSHA's Guidance Document for Residential Construction.

Recent fines and awards

Wayne Farms poultry plant cited for exposing workers to musculoskeletal, other safety and health hazards - Alabama

Wayne Farms LLC, which makes products under brand names Dutch Quality House and Platinum Harvest, was cited for exposing workers to dangerous machinery, fall and musculoskeletal disorder hazards. The investigation was initiated after the agency received a complaint from the Southern Poverty Law Center. Proposed penalties total $102,600.

Defiance of OSHA orders means legal trouble for contractor - Illinois

A judge has ordered the owner of an Illinois contracting company, which was in the Severe Violator Enforcement Program, to be taken into custody for defying OSHA orders to correct what the agency has described as serious trenching hazards and for failing to pay fines. U.S. Marshals are looking for Mike Neri, owner of a sewer and water contracting firm based in Elk Grove Village. According to OSHA, once apprehended, Neri would remain in custody until a judge certifies to the Court that Neri either has complied fully with the Court's enforcement order or has demonstrated he is unable to comply.

Central Transport LLC faces $330,800 in fines - Massachusetts

Employees at the Central Transport LLC freight shipping terminal in Billerica were exposed to electrocution, falls, crushing and other injuries as a result of their employer's knowing and repeated disregard for basic worker safeguards. The violations were willful, repeat and serious and the company faces $330,800 in fines.

Double Dutch Dairy cited after worker fatally injured by front-end loader - Nebraska

A Latino worker was fatally injured after being struck-by a front-end loader hauling hay at Double Dutch Dairy in Shelby. The company was cited for four serious safety violations after an inspection found that the driver's view was obstructed. Proposed fines are $22,500.

Masonry contractor faces fines of $100,560 - Pennsylvania

Bricklayers were exposed to fall hazards as high as 30-feet above the ground while creating the exterior finish of new single-family dwellings at two work sites in Philadelphia, according to workplace safety and health citations issued against Vyacheslav Leshko, doing business as T and S Masonry LLC. The two imminent danger inspections resulted in a proposed combined penalty totaling $100,560.

Hanover contractor named a severe violator for again exposing workers to potentially deadly trenching hazards - Pennsylvania

Employees of C & G Refrigeration Inc., a Hanover plumbing, heating and air conditioning contractor, were twice exposed to trench collapses according to investigations. Though there were no injuries in the collapse, investigators found employees working in an unprotected trench that was 7-feet deep. C & G was placed in OSHA's Severe Violator Enforcement Program due to four willful violations related to trenching hazards and faces more than $64,000 in penalties.

Ringling Bros. and Barnum & Bailey Circus cited for serious safety violation - Rhode Island

A "Hair Hang Act" performance during a Ringling Bros. and Barnum & Bailey Circus show on May 4 in Providence took a disastrous turn when the apparatus the performers were hanging from suddenly fell to the ground. An investigation has determined this incident occurred because the carabiner used to support the performers was improperly loaded. As a result of its findings, Feld Entertainment Inc., doing business as Ringling Bros. and Barnum & Bailey Circus, was cited for one serious safety violation with a proposed penalty of $7,000, the maximum fine allowed by law.

Workers cleaning chemical spill at plastics plant lacked training, personal protective equipment - Wisconsin

Workers cleaning a chemical spill at Penda Corp. in Portage had not been trained in proper cleanup procedures or provided proper personal protective equipment and workers experienced symptoms of overexposure to an isocyanates chemical used in plastics manufacturing that can cause occupational asthma and other lung problems, as well as irritation of the eyes, nose, throat and skin. Seven serious violations, carrying proposed penalties of $49,000, were cited.

Bremer Manufacturing Co. cited in death of worker at aluminum foundry - Wisconsin

A 55-year-old worker was found unresponsive in a restroom at Bremer Manufacturing Co. Inc. and later died. The man, who had been employed at the Elkhart Lake foundry for 38 years, worked with resin-containing isocyanates on the sand molding line. Following an inspection, the company was cited for one willful, one repeat and one serious health violation because the company failed to train workers on the physical and health hazards of chemicals in the workplace. Proposed fines are $81,900.

Detailed descriptions of the citations above and other OSHA citations can be found here.