CANTON, Ohio (WKBN) – The safety latch of a crane failed and dropped 1,000 pounds of equipment on a factory floor worker at TimkenSteel Corporation in Canton. The incident is the second time in a year that the U.S. Department of Labor’s Occupational Safety and Health Administration found struck-by, fall and amputation hazards at the company’s two Canton plants following inspections.
OSHA issued TimkenSteel’s Gambrinus plant one willful, one repeated and two serious safety citations on Oct. 30 as a result of its investigation into the May 4, 2015 injury. The seven-year employee could not work for several months after the incident in which he fractured his left foot and broke several bones.
“This worker is lucky to be alive. We also observed conditions where workers could have fallen or lost limbs. It is unacceptable that the company has repeatedly been cited for these same hazards. TimkenSteel’s safety and health program has major deficiencies that need to be addressed immediately,” said Howard Eberts, OSHA’s area director in Cleveland.
Investigators found workers were exposed to falls due to lack of guardrails, slippery surfaces and protective equipment; live machinery operating parts during service and maintenance because locking devices, guards and other devices were not used; damaged equipment and electrical hazards.
OSHA also found the company did not report injuries and illness, as required.
TimkenSteel was established in 2014 as an independent subsidiary of the Timken Company. The parent company has been inspected 27 times since 2005, resulting in the issuance of 76 violations. The manufacturer of large steel bars and seamless mechanical tubing was mostly recently cited by OSHA in November 2014. Its Harrison steel plant melts, rolls, produces and finishes steel, and its Gambrinus plant performs cold steel finishing.
The company has 15 business days from receipt of its citations and penalties to comply, request an informal conference with OSHA’s area director in Cleveland or contest the findings before the independent Occupational Safety and Health Review Commission.