Chemical Exposure Results in Fines

Tuesday, October 9, 2012 @ 06:10 PM gHale

Cleveland Tank & Supply Inc. faces $72,800 in fines for 19 serious health and safety violations, including failing to assess and monitor exposure to hexavalent chromium, and provide adequate personal protective equipment, said officials at the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA).

“Cleveland Tank & Supply has a responsibility to ensure that workers are properly protected from known workplace hazards such as exposure to chromium,” said Howard Eberts, OSHA’s area director in Cleveland. “OSHA is committed to protecting workers, especially when employers fail to do so.”

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Fifteen health violations include failing to assess workers’ exposure to hexavalent chromium and ensure exposures were below the permissible limit. Exposure to chromium, commonly found in dyes, paints, plastic and coating materials, can result in irritation to airways, nasal passages, skin and eyes.

Other health violations involve failing to implement a hearing conservation program, provide an emergency eye wash station, inspect and train employees to use fire extinguishers, provide hazard communication training, securely mount a liquefied petroleum cylinder, provide training to powered industrial operators and properly guard bench grinders. Violations relating to personal protective equipment standards are for not documenting equipment assessment, providing and training workers to use such equipment, ensuring its quality or providing it at no cost to workers.

Additionally, four safety violations involve failing to develop machine-specific lockout/tagout procedures, evaluate power industrial truck operator performance every three years, ensure machine guarding was provided for various machinery and ensure point of operation guarding was in place on machinery to prevent amputation and other hazards. 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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