OSHA: Salem company exposed workers to amputation risk

SALEM, Ohio (WKBN) -‒ The U.S. Department of Labor’s Occupational Safety and Health Administration cited Metal & Wire Products Co., Inc., for 25 safety and health violations, according to a Wednesday press release.

The company manufactures metal parts for recreational vehicles. The proposed penalties for the violations total $72,800.

A message left for the company’s president was not immediately returned.

OSHA’s complaint investigation found several violations of machine guarding and lockout/tag out procedures, which protect workers from lacerations, caught-in and amputation hazards. Many of the violations involved the plant’s power presses, which form metal materials.

“Careful operation and safety precautions are vital when operating power presses because of their use in high-production manufacturing and the amount of operator involvement. Injuries related to machinery and equipment often result in death or permanent disability,” said Howard Eberts, OSHA’s area director in Cleveland. “OSHA’s inspection found multiple violations of these safety standards. Inadequate machine guarding and lockout/tagout procedures are among the most frequently cited OSHA standards.”

Several of the 21 serious violations involved unsafe operation of mechanical power presses, including: failing to have disconnect switches and control reliability, lack of brake monitoring safeguards, failing to establish a die-setting procedure and failing to use safety blocks and test and inspect presses at least weekly.

Other serious violations included failing to develop energy control procedures for placement of lockout/tag out devices and to inspect such procedures at least annually, lack of training on hazardous energy, inadequate machine guarding, and lack of fire extinguisher training.

An OSHA violation is considered serious if death or serious physical harm can result from a hazard an employer knew or should have known exits.

The company has 15 business days from when it receives its citations and penalties to comply, request an informal conference with OSHA’s area director, or contest the findings before the independent Occupational Safety & Health Review Commission.


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