OSHA Proposes $300K in Penalties Against Ohio Flooring Manufacturer for Exposing Employees to Amputation Hazards

OSHA Proposes $300K in Penalties Against Ohio Flooring Manufacturer for Exposing Employees to Amputation Hazards

FOSTORIA, OH – The U.S. Department of Labor’s Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) has cited Nox U.S. LLC – a vinyl floor manufacturer based in Fostoria, Ohio – for exposing employees to machine hazards, and failing to develop hazardous energy control procedures to prevent employees from coming into contact with moving machine parts. The company has been placed by OSHA in its Severe Violator Enforcement Program and is facing $316,929 in penalties.

According to a U.S Department of Labor press release, an employee suffered the amputation of the lower right arm and four fingers after becoming caught in a lamination machine. OSHA has cited Nox U.S. LLC for:

  • Lack of adequate machine guarding on rotating parts and shafts;
  • Failing to develop specific procedures for unjamming flooring material from machines on the lamination line;
  • Failing to train workers on hazardous energy control procedures; and
  • Failing to provide adequate personal protective equipment to workers.

This isn’t the first time that the company has been cited for a violation of OSHA’s safety and health standards. In December 2017, OSHA cited Nox U.S. LLC for similar hazards after two workers suffered injuries in separate incidents involving a lack of machine safety procedures.

OSHA requires employers to provide safe and healthful working conditions for employees by continuously monitoring workplace procedures and processes to ensure they are adequate and effective, and employees are given appropriate training on the use of such procedures and associated equipment. Along the same lines, machines that expose workers to injuries must also be properly guarded, using appropriate machine guard equipment.

OSHA’s Machine Guarding webpage provides valuable information on requirements for protecting workers from machine hazards that can cause amputations, crushed fingers or hands, and other injuries.

Nox U.S. LLC has 15 business days to appeal against these citations and penalties.

Published on: January 18, 2020