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After a recent Site Specific Targeting Program inspection at Scenic Wood Products' pallet manufacturing plant in Sugarcreek, Ohio, the U.S. Department of Labor's Occupational Safety and Health Administration issued 20 serious safety violations. The government agency proposed fines totaling $64,400 against the company.
The OSHA Site Specific Targeting Program enforces measures that protect employee safety at companies with the highest rates of injuries and illnesses. A company receives a serious safety citation when employers know or should know there is a significantly increased probably that employees can be killed or suffer serious physical harm at the job site.
In the case of Scenic Woods Products, some of the serious safety violations included failure to have adequate machine guarding and personal protective equipment, failure to provide fire extinguisher refresher training and failure to provide fall protection for workers conducting maintenance operations on unguarded platforms on the facility's roof.
Among the safety violations, three were in response to electrical safety practices. One of the three safety practice violations included not providing or requiring proper personal protective equipment for workers performing live electrical work. The other two violations were failure to conduct a flash hazard analysis and train workers on electrical safety hazards.
"Scenic Wood Products has a responsibility to recognize the hazards that exist in its workplace and ensure workers are properly trained in the safe operation and maintenance of required equipment," said Deborah Zubaty, OSHA's area director in Columbus. "Employers are also responsible for ensuring workers are provided with personal protective equipment to guard against known hazards in the workplace."
Programmed inspections of high-risk hazards and industries are investigated through the Site Specific Targeting Program in addition to 11 national emphasis OSHA programs and nearly 140 regional and local emphasis programs.
Safety equipment can save lives
When employees are not trained or improperly trained, they may not know when they are in a dangerous situation. Taking the time to train employees and make sure they are knowledgeable about what to do when hazardous conditions arise can prevent injury and even death.
The proper safety equipment can also save lives when it comes to working in dangerous fields such as manufacturing. Equipment like fire and gas detection systems can provide assistance to employees who may not realize they are in a potentially harmful situation. These systems can also help employers maintain their commitment to keeping workers safe while on the job.
The OSHA inspection at Scenic Wood Products is the fourth since 2011. The company has 15 days to comply with the recent citations and penalties or request a meeting with OSHA's area director to contest the allegations.
Industrial Safety News brought to you by Safety Systems Technology, Inc., leaders in fire and gas detection systems.