News Release

US Department of Labor finds Chicago-area medical glass manufacturer again ignoring machine safety procedures, issues repeat violations

OSHA finds Gerresheimer Glass failed to train workers in lockout/tagout procedures

CHICAGO HEIGHTS, IL – A follow-up workplace safety inspection at a metro Chicago manufacturer of medical glass bottles and vials found the company continues to fail in its obligation to protect workers by training them in machine safety procedures.

The U.S. Department of Labor’s Occupational Safety and Health Administration returned to Gerresheimer Glass Inc., in Chicago Heights on Jan. 31, 2024, to verify compliance after inspections in October and December 2022 found workers exposed to machine hazards. 

OSHA proposed $145,415 in penalties after citing the company with one repeat violation and four serious violations for the following:

  • Not training each authorized employee performing and/or assisting with service and maintenance tasks, including mold changes on lines and bottle machines. 
  • Failing to follow machine specific energy control procedures during a mold change.
  • Exposing workers to an unguarded chain and sprocket on a crusher machine.
  • Allowing employees to operate forklifts without required training.
  • Exposing workers to trip hazards from floor panels in poor repair. 

“Ignoring OSHA and industry-recommended machine safety procedures is a leading cause of injuries in the manufacturing industry,” explained OSHA Chicago South Area Director James Martineck in Tinley Park. “Workers must be trained in specific safety procedures for each machine they operate or service and they should never be exposed to operating machine parts. Employers are responsible for ensuring safe working conditions for all employees in their facilities.”

OSHA provides information on lockout/tagout and other machine safety procedures for use by employers to understand how to protect workers from potential safety and health hazards.

Based in Germany, Gerresheimer has 35 production sites in 16 countries. 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.

Learn more about OSHA. 

Occupational Safety & Health Administration
May 6, 2024
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Media Contact: Scott Allen
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Media Contact: Rhonda Burke
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