An IN automotive manufacturing facility has been fined $224,000 by the Indiana - OSHA for five alleged safety violations following the death of an employee in October. A female worker, 44, died after an incident with a machine at the plant on Saturday, Oct. 21, 2017. The preliminary cause of her death was ruled multiple blunt force trauma, but a final cause has not yet been determined, according to Clark County Coroner. The safety order and violations resulted from an investigation at the facility that began Oct. 23.  Two of the violations were deemed to cause a "high probability of death or serious harm". These violations, totaling $14,000, were a failure to establish and maintain safe work conditions through employees' exposure to being caught in rotating machine parts due to loose clothing; and lack of effective training on hazardous power sources, such as power from moving belts, that could cause employees to become caught or pinched by machinery. The remaining three were violations that the facility management "knowingly [committed] with plain indifference to the law; the employer either [knew] action is a violation or [was] aware of hazardous conditions with no effort to eliminate". These violations, totaling $210,000, were inadequate procedures in identifying how to control the belt and pulley power and how to stop it; failure to properly guard pulleys that were 7 feet or less from the floor or work area, and failure to properly guard rotating belts from employees.  In January, OSHA fined one of the company's Ohio facilities $569,463 for five violations, which are under contest by the company. Those fines came from an investigation following an employee losing his hand and part of his arm while at work.  The company, which specializes in vehicle acoustics and thermal management systems, has 50 locations in more than 20 countries and employs more than 11,000 people. Here are the citations:

Safety Order 01 Item 001

Type of Violation: Serious; $7,000

IC 22-8-1.1 Section 2: The employer did not establish and maintain conditions of work which were reasonably safe and healthful for employees, and free from recognized hazards that were causing or likely to cause death or serious physical harm to employees in that employees were exposed to caught in rotating machine part hazards due to loose clothing: Pre-Opener Reclaim - Employees wore loose clothing such as, but not limited to; hooded sweatshirts, around rotating belts and pulleys which created potential caught in/pinch point hazards.

AMONG OTHER METHODS, FEASIBLE MEANS OF ABATEMENT MAY INCLUDE: Adhering to the safety rules listed in the user manual which states on page 2, Chapter 1 Safety rules "6. Wear proper clothing - Avoid wearing loose clothing, gloves, necklaces, bracelets, or jewelry that may be drawn into moving parts. Wear nonslip footwear. Wear a hair cap that can wrap long hair."

 

Safety Order 01 Item 002

Type of Violation: Serious; $7,000

29 CFR 1910.147(c)(7)(i)(A): Authorized employee(s) did not receive training in the recognition of applicable hazardous energy sources, the type and magnitude of the energy available in the workplace, and the methods and means necessary for energy isolation and control:

Pre-Opener Reclaim - Operators were not effectively trained to identify and control hazardous energy such as, but not limited to: the kinetic energy from moving belts and pulleys that powered the fine opener, which created potential caught in/pinch point hazards.

 

Safety Order 02 Item 001

Type of Violation: Knowing; $70,000

29 CFR 1910.147(c)(4)(i): Procedures were not developed, documented and utilized for the control of potentially hazardous energy when employees were engaged in activities covered by this section:

Pre-Opener Reclaim - The lockout/tagout procedures did not identify the means to control the belt and pulley kinetic energy and a means to effectively deenergize the machine during duties such as, but not limited to; adjusting the piece of fiber on the fine opener section, which created potential caught in/pinch point hazards.

 

Safety Order 02 Item 002

Type of Violation: Knowing; $70,000

29 CFR 1910.219(d)(1): Pulley(s) with part(s) seven feet or Jess from the floor or work platform were not guarded in accordance with the requirements specified in 29 CFR 1910.219(m) and (o)

Pre-Opener Reclaim - The rotating pulleys on the side of the machine exposed employees inside the fence performing duties such as, but not limited to: replacing and/or readjusting the fiber pad, to caught in/pinch point hazards.

 

Safety Order 02 Item 003

Type of Violation: Knowing; $70,000

29 CFR 1910.219(e)(3)(i): Vertical or inclined belt(s) were not enclosed by guard(s) conforming to the requirements specified in 29 CPR 1910.219(m) and (o) of this section: Pre-Opener Reclaim - The rotating belts on the side of the machine exposed employees inside the fence performing duties such as, but not limited to: replacing and/or readjusting the fiber pad, to caught in/pinch point hazards.

 

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