Whenever a Pennsylvania company is cited for OSHA violations, that employer must take certain steps to remedy the workplace hazards or else face further OSHA action. Last year, OSHA began an investigation into a Shippensburg casting company. The results of that inquiry resulted in 26 citations for alleged safety violations.
The investigation at the foundry started last August. There were several “serious” violations, any of which might have led to a workplace injury or, worse, a work-related death. These included lack of a preventive maintenance program for cranes based on the manufacturer’s recommendations, unrepaired cranes being used by workers, platforms which lacked proper railings, workers going from one level to another without the appropriate stairs or ladders and potentially unsecured forklift loads.
Additional violations included lack of clear markings on cranes regarding loads and lack of appropriate crane inspections. The foundry allegedly exposed workers to multiple additional hazards, including electrical, amputation, fall, tripping and struck-by hazards.
A work-related injury can lead to serious financial problems for a worker and his or her family. There are lost wages when a worker must take time off, and there are medical expenses which can quickly become exorbitant. In the worst cases, a worker’s family must somehow find a way to make ends meet if work site hazards result in death.
Pennsylvania workers who are injured on the job are entitled to recover workers’ compensation benefits to cover some of the financial loss. The benefits are paid regardless of whether the employer was negligent. The benefits include compensation for lost wages, medical expenses, and temporary and permanent disability. If a worker is killed, the family is entitled to collect workers’ compensation death benefits.
Source: Recycling Today, “OSHA fines Pennsylvania foundry for repeat violations,” Mar. 12, 2014