OSHA Fines New York Manufacturer $287K after Employee Injury

List of infractions included forklift training deficiencies – failing to train and evaluate forklift operators on how to safely operate equipment

WESTBURY, NY – The U.S. Department of Labor’s Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) has cited U.S. Nonwoven Corp. – a home and personal care fabric product manufacturer – for repeat and serious safety violations after an employee suffered a fractured hand at the plant in Hauppauge, New York. The company faces $287,212 in penalties.

Investigators determined the employee’s injury occurred when his hand became caught in a fabric-softener sheet-cutting machine. OSHA cited U.S. Nonwoven Corp. for lack of machine guards; failing to train and evaluate forklift operators on how to safely operate equipment, and provide training on lockout/tagout procedures. OSHA also cited the company for exposing employees to fire and smoke inhalation hazards and failing to report an amputation, provide illness and injury records to OSHA in a timely manner, store materials securely, and repair damaged storage racks.

“Companies are required by law to train employees and provide appropriate measures to protect workers from workplace injuries,” said OSHA Long Island Area Director Anthony Ciuffo in Westbury, New York.

Even though safety deficiencies may be unrelated to the accident, such as forklift training, in this case, a rigorous inspection following an accident can result in them falling into scrutiny.

OSHA offers resources on safeguarding equipmentoperating forklifts safely, and the requirements for reporting injuries.

The company has 15 business days from receipt of the citations and proposed penalties to comply, request an informal conference with OSHA’s area director, or contest the findings before the independent Occupational Safety and Health Review Commission.

Further details regarding the cited infractions are listed here.

Under the Occupational Safety and Health Act of 1970, employers are responsible for providing safe and healthful workplaces for their employees. OSHA’s role is to help ensure these conditions for America’s working men and women by setting and enforcing standards and providing training, education, and assistance. For more information, visit https://www.osha.gov.

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