Safety Fines at TX Stamping Plant

Tuesday, December 16, 2014 @ 04:12 PM gHale

An inspection prompted by employee complaints found workers exposed to amputations and other hazards at D&D Manufacturing Inc. in El Paso, TX.

As a result, the El Paso-based stamping plant is facing $181,800 in fines for 41 safety and health violations, including 36 serious violations, said officials of the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA). Headquartered in Bolingbrook, IL, D&D Manufacturing fabricates stamped metal components for equipment manufacturers and employs 37 workers in El Paso.

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“Workers were at risk of serious injuries because D&D Manufacturing failed to guard mechanical and hydraulic presses and to ensure machines were de-energized during maintenance,” said Joann Figueroa, OSHA’s area director in El Paso. “Federal standards addressing these hazards have existed for decades. D&D’s failure to follow these safety and health requirements is unacceptable.”

The 36 serious violations, totaling $177,300, were for failure to provide adequate machine guarding; properly inspect power presses; and utilize proper procedures to de-energize equipment during maintenance, including punch presses, OSHA said.

The employer also failed to implement an effective hearing conservation program for noise levels in excess of 85 decibels; did not provide proper maintenance on conductors with damaged insulation; and exposed workers to live electrical parts, OSHA officials said. 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.

The remaining five violations, with a $4,500 penalty, included citations for failure to assess the need for personal protective equipment; educate workers on the voluntary use of respiratory protection; implement a written hazard communication program; and certify training of forklift operators. Additionally, the employer received a hazard letter addressing slip hazards and obstructions in aisles and walkways.

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