National Manufacturing Co. Inc. of Chatham, N.J., was cited in July by the U.S. Department of Labor’s Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) for 10 workplace safety violations, amounting to $56,000 in fines.
“National Manufacturing Co. put workers in harm’s way by not properly controlling chemical hazards at its facility in Chatham,” said Kris Hoffman, director of OSHA’s Parsippany, N.J., office in a U.S. Department of Labor news brief. “We found the company’s lack of effective hazard management relating to its degreasing system directly resulted in flash fires on Jan. 29 and Feb. 9, 2016, just 11 days apart. This company must do what’s right to protect its workers and provide a safe and healthy workplace.”
Borough of Chatham officials alerted OSHA in January of this year after an employee cleaning a degreasing tank at National Manufacturing was burned in a flash fire. A safety inspection found that the company was using N-Propyl Bromide, a chemical used to degrease metals, plastics and electronic and optical components, which led OSHA to perform a health inspection in February to investigate chemical related health hazards at the premises.
Inspectors said they identified several hazards in addition to National Manufacturing’s use of N-Propyl Bromide, including its failure to provide fall protection for workers exposed to falls up to seven feet, electrical and housekeeping hazards and failure to medically evaluate and fit test employees using respirators.
The company has 15 business days from receipt of its citations and proposed penalties to comply, request a conference with OSHA’s area director or contest the findings before the independent Occupational Safety and Health Review Commission.
Source: U.S. Department of Labor
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