ELMORE, Ala. — Amtech Southeast Inc. has been cited by the U.S. Department of Labor's Occupational Safety and Health Administration for 15 safety and health violations, carrying $50,000 in proposed penalties. The agency initiated an inspection of the company's manufacturing facility in Elmore in September 2013 after receiving a complaint concerning workplace hazards.
"The employer put workers at risk of serious injury or death by not protecting them from fire, explosion and other hazards," said Joseph Roesler, OSHA's area director in Mobile. "These deficiencies must be corrected immediately."
Workers faced amputation, laceration and caught-in hazards and were exposed to excessive noise over the permissible limit. Twelve serious violations were cited, including the employer's failure to ensure protection from fire/explosion hazards where PVC piping was used to transport compressed air; reduce compressed air for cleaning to less than 30-pounds-per-square inch; and label and provide training on hazardous chemicals. 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.
Three other-than-serious violations include failing to develop a respiratory protection program and an assessment of personal protective equipment. Additionally, the company did not document whether workers completed training to operate powered industrial trucks. 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.
Amtech produces fiber-reinforced plastic components and 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 & Health Review Commission.
To ask questions, obtain compliance assistance, file a complaint, or report workplace hospitalizations, fatalities or situations posing imminent danger to workers, the public should call OSHA's toll-free hotline at 800-321-OSHA (6742) or the agency's Mobile Area Office at 251-441-6131.
Under the Occupational Safety and Health Act of 1970, employers are responsible for providing safe and healthful workplaces for their employees. OSHA's role is to ensure these conditions for America's working men and women by setting and enforcing standards, and providing training, education and assistance. For more information, visit http://www.osha.gov.