Amputation Leads to Safety Fines

Thursday, December 19, 2013 @ 05:12 PM gHale

Grand Rock Co. Inc. is facing $52,500 in fines for one willful and one serious safety violation after a worker had four fingers amputated June 12, said officials at the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA).

The employee was operating an unguarded machine that bends tubes at the Painesville, OH, automotive parts manufacturer.

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“It’s unacceptable that Grand Rock Co. failed to provide adequate machine guarding in its facility and that a week after this tragic incident, the machine remained unguarded and in use, exposing other workers to similar injuries,” said Howard Eberts, OSHA’s area director in Cleveland. “Employers must take all precautions to protect workers from known hazards that exist in their facilities.”

One willful violation was for failing to ensure points of operation ended up guarded on the tube bending machine, which makes automotive exhaust systems. A willful violation is one committed with intentional, knowing or voluntary disregard for the law’s requirement, or with plain indifference to employee safety and health.

Additionally, one serious violation was for failing to develop specific lockout/tagout procedures. 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.

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