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Ohio company cited for hazardous work environment

The Occupational Safety and Health Administration cited PPG Industries for multiple safety violations at one of its Ohio based facilities. The inspection of the company began late last September after OSHA received a complaint alleging that PPG Industries was operating an unguarded winder machine in one of its facilities.

Companies are required to protect workers from serious injury and unsafe working conditions. Unfortunately in some instances, employers fail to do so and place their employees in dangerous working conditions, increasing the risk of workplace accidents and injuries.

PPG, an international paint and coating company, received three serious violations and one willful violation following the OSHA inspection. According to OSHA, serious violations are issued when an employer is aware of a hazard that can cause serious injury or death.

In addition to the violation for failing to guard the winder machine, the company was cited for:

  • Failing to lock out the energy sources of equipment before maintenance
  • Failing to have authorized employees secure lockout devices on certain equipment
  • Failing to secure guards to equipment

In the present case, the failure of PPG to provide the proper guarding put employees operating the machine at risk for serious injury, including the possibility of amputation. If the matter had not been timely addressed, someone could have been seriously hurt.

Workplace accidents can occur in any work environment. Though complaints can trigger an inspection, an inspection does not happen overnight. And while workplace inspections can prove beneficial and hold companies accountable, all too often they do not occur until it is too late.

Source: Occupational Health and Safety, "$90,000 Fine Issued to Firm for Unguarded Winder Machine, Equipment Hazards," Nov. 20, 2011

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