North / South America
Universal Concrete cited for safety, health violations
Aug, 08 2012
(Pottstown, PA.) -- An inspection at Universal Concrete Products in West Pottsgrove resulted in citations by OSHA for 18 health and safety violations.
According to a press release from the U.S. Department of Labor, four of the violations have been committed in the past at the facility. The inspection came about because of a complaint issued against the concrete manufacturer, according to the Labor Department. The penalties imposed against the company for the violations could amount to $47,286.
“The repeat violations involve failing to provide an adequate respiratory protection system and ‘lockout/tagout’ methods to prevent machinery from accidentally starting up,” according to a press release from the Occupational Safety and Health Administration. “A repeat violation exists when an employer previously has been cited for the same or a similar violation of a standard, regulation, rule or order at any other facility in federal enforcement states within the last five years.”
The repeat violations could result in $18,340 in penalties. Universal Concrete was cited by OSHA for similar violations in 2007.
“This company continues to put its employees at risk of serious injury by not correcting previously cited hazards,” said Jean Kulp, director of OSHA’s Allentown area office. “It is imperative that the necessary steps are taken to provide workers at this facility with a safe and healthful work environment.”
Donald Faust Jr., president of Universal Concrete, was unavailable for comment on Tuesday.
The “serious” violations found in the recent inspection were “failing to provide standard railings around floor holes and open-sided floors, provide fire extinguishers and an emergency evacuation plan, have an adequate respiratory protection program, ensure that machines’ energy sources are locked/tagged out, provide powered industrial truck training, properly inspect cranes, ensure that a concrete mixer has proper machine guarding, replace missing knockout plugs and damaged panel boxes, and have a hazard communication program.
“A serious violation occurs when there is substantial probability that death or serious physical harm could result from a hazard about which the employer knew or should have known,” said OSHA.
Universal might have to pay $28,946 in penalties for the violations.
“Other-than-serious” violations found during the inspection were “hazards associated with walking and working surfaces and electrical installations” which do not result in fines, according to OSHA.
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