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OSHA cites manufacturer for disregarding workplace safety

While every manufacturing facility has unique safety hazards, some dangers are present on most industrial work sites. The Occupational Safety and Health Administration prescribes safety regulations that must be followed to ensure workplace safety. Unfortunately, workers in Missouri and other states are often the victims of noncompliant company owners.

A manufacturing company in another state was recently investigated by OSHA. The company produces decorative polymer film for use on billboards and banners. OSHA's inspection followed two incidents in 2015 in which the hands of workers got caught in print rollers. According to investigators, it was not only a matter of exposure to rotating gears, shafts and rollers. The lack of lockout procedures also threatened the safety of the 160 workers at this facility.

Workers were not provided with the required safety training related to lockout/tagout procedures to prevent accidental activation of equipment while maintenance or cleaning takes place. Compliance with this basic rule, and safety measures concerning moving machine parts, could have prevented the injuries the workers suffered to their hands. The lack of safety rails on stairs was also listed among the safety violations for which OSHA proposed a fine of over $50,000.

When a limb is caught in the working parts of a machine, the injuries can be life-changing. It is not uncommon for such incidents to cause amputations that can significantly impact the lives of victims and their families. When workplace safety is not a priority, accidents are prone to happen. Injured workers are entitled to pursue benefits claims through the Missouri workers' compensation insurance program for financial assistance with medical expenses and lost income. When amputations are caused by workplace accidents, additional compensation may be awarded. In those circumstances, vocational training may be available to prepare workers for different jobs designed accommodate any physical limitations.

Source: wtva.com, "OSHA fines Corinth company over safety violations", Mel Carlock, Jan. 20, 2016

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