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Machine Guarding Accident Results in Hand Amputation and Civil Penalty

Posted on 8/2/2021 by Lauren Scott

A 21-year-old metal worker suffered a partial hand amputation during his third week at a metal manufacturing facility after protective guards were removed from a sheet metal cutting machine, according to OSHA.

An investigation by the US Department of Labor's Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) found the metal roofing company from Trenton, FL allegedly removed protective guards from the machine because the guards caused imperfections to newly manufactured roofing panels.

As a result, OSHA issued a $122,879 citation to the company for allegedly allowing the guards to be removed, a “willful” violation according to OSHA. OSHA defines a “willful” violation as “a violation in which the employer either knowingly failed to comply with a legal requirement or acted with plain indifference to employee safety.”

The company has until August 12 to comply, request an informal conference with OSHA's area director, or contest the findings before the independent Occupational Safety and Health Review Commission.


Machine Guarding: A Top 10 OSHA Violation 

Machine guarding (29 CFR 1910.212) is consistently one of OSHA’s top-cited safety violations year after year.
OSHA requires employers to identify workplace machinery that can cause injury to an employee. Machine injuries can occur at the point of operation, from rotating and/or moving parts, or from flying chips or sparks.

Machine guarding was number 10 on OSHA’s most recent list of top safety violations, with 1,313 violations cited in 2020.
 

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Tags: fines, machine guarding, osha, OSHA compliance, penalties, safety

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