Big Safety Fines for Pride Plating

Wednesday, September 10, 2014 @ 08:09 AM gHale

Pride Plating Inc. is facing $341,550 in fines for 38 violations, including exposing workers to cancer-causing health hazards by inhaling, absorbing and ingesting hexavalent chromium at its Grove, OK, facility, said officials at the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA).

Pride Plating employs 110 workers at its Grove facility.

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“The chromium standard addresses exposure. OSHA has documented and cited three routes of exposure in this case,” said David Bates, OSHA’s area director in Oklahoma City. “At Pride Plating, workers were exposed to hexavalent chromium through spray painting and dip tank operations, and in the lunchroom and smoking areas.”

Nine repeat violations, with a penalty of $180,180, were for chromium violations, including failure to provide safe personal protective equipment for workers exposed to chromium; demarcate regulated areas where chromium ended up sprayed; prevent ingestion of food and drinks and absorption of cigarettes in chromium-regulated areas; and properly train workers exposed to the facility’s chromium, caustics and corrosives. A repeat violation exists when an employer previously faced citations 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. Similar violations were in 2009.

With a penalty of $161,370, the remaining 29 violations, including 28 serious, were for failure to provide adequate walking and working surfaces; separate locker space and storage for street clothing and protective clothing; perform personal protective equipment hazard assessments; and guard power transmission belts. Respirator violations included failing to implement a respiratory program and fit test and ensure respirators were stored in a sanitary location. Chromium violations included failure to inform workers of their exposure records, provide adequate washing facilities and label chemical containers. 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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