OSHA cites Georgia sheet metal fabricator with 42 safety and health violations following fatality

OSHA has cited Don Park USA LP in Conley for 42 safety and health violations. OSHA began an inspection in October 2010 after an employee died when he was crushed by a large steel frame weighing approximately 1,550 pounds.

The agency has cited Don Park USA for one serious safety violation related to the fatality: failing to exercise caution or planning when moving heavy, unstable loads in a vertical position. 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.

“Exposing workers to life-threatening safety and health hazards is unpardonable. Many of these hazards can easily be corrected,” said William Fulcher, director of OSHA’s Atlanta-East Area Office. “No worker should have to risk his or her life for a paycheck.”

The company has received citations for 29 other serious safety violations, including hazards associated with forklifts lacking seatbelts, machinery lacking guards to protect workers from amputations, lifting equipment not designed or tested for the loads being moved, numerous electrical deficiencies exposing workers to possible shocks, and a lack of training for employees in lockout/tagout procedures and the control of hazardous energy. Additionally, an emergency exit was locked, exit routes were obstructed and inadequately lighted, and employees lacked training in the use of forklifts.

One serious health violation was cited for allowing employees to operate plasma cutting equipment without adequate personal protection equipment.

Seven other-than-serious violations include failing to notify the agency of a fatality within eight hours of the event, properly store gasoline and a gasoline-oil mix, visually inspect fire extinguishers at least monthly, subject fire extinguishers to an annual maintenance check, conduct daily inspections of forklifts, label liquefied propane gas cylinders to identify the chemical content and label same cylinders to identify the hazardous nature of the chemicals.

Four other-than-serious health violations include failing to complete OSHA logs in sufficient detail, train employees in a hazard communication program, establish a respiratory protection program and provide employees who voluntarily wear respirators with sufficient information about the respirators as required by OSHA regulations. An other-than-serious violation is one that has a direct relationship to job safety and health, but probably would not cause death or serious physical harm.

Don Park is engaged in sheet metal work for custom fabrication of air conditioning ducts and air distribution systems. Proposed penalties total $127,200.

The company has 15 business days from receipt of the citations and proposed penalties to comply, request a conference with OSHA’s area director or contest the findings before the independent Occupational Safety and Health Review Commission. The site was inspected by OSHA’s Atlanta-East Area Office, 2183 Northlake Parkway, Building 7, Suite 110, Tucker, Ga. 30084; telephone 770-493-6644.

Visit our News Library to read more news stories.