US Department of Labor cites Marietta manufacturer for exposing workers willfully to preventable fall hazards that led to employee’s death
MARIETTA, GA – A federal safety and health investigation by the U.S. Department of Labor’s Occupational Safety and Health Administration concluded that a Marietta manufacturer allowed a forklift operator to work on elevated storage racks without fall protection, resulting in the employee’s death.
On Feb. 13, the 55-year-old worker fell 15 feet onto a concrete floor while attempting to move cabinets from metal storage racks onto his forklift’s pallet. The cabinets also fell, landing on top of him. Co-workers called for help after finding the worker beneath the cabinets. Taken to a nearby hospital, the worker died the next day.
OSHA determined that FBS Manufacturing Corp. – operating as Kitchen & Bath Solutions – willfully failed to ensure that employees used fall protection as required. In addition to the willful violation, OSHA cited the employer with five serious violations for exposing workers to the following hazards:
- Damaged exit signs; and routes with inadequate lighting.
- Failure to train employees on operating powered industrial trucks safely and not inspecting or removing faulty forklifts from service.
- Electrical shock from uncovered outlets and use of damaged extension cords without ground pins.
OSHA proposed $167,933 in penalties for citations.
“FBS Manufacturing Corp.’s failure to implement legally required safety procedures led to tragedy for a worker and his family,” said OSHA Area Office Director Jeffery Stawowy in Atlanta-West. “The fact that this incident was preventable only deepens their loss. This case should remind all employers that prioritizing production or profits over safety is never an acceptable choice.”
FBS Manufacturing Corp. produces reconstituted wood products and imports and wholesales cabinets.
The company has 15 business days from receipt of its citations and penalties to comply, request an informal conference with OSHA’s area director, or contest the findings before the independent Occupational Safety and Health Review Commission.
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 workers by setting and enforcing standards, and providing training, education and assistance.