The U.S. Department of Labor’s Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) has fined Georg Fischer Central Plastics LLC and Nationwide Plastics Inc. for the deaths of a an employee and a self-employed driver who were killed by a forklift.
Georg Fischer Central Plastics and Nationwide Plastics share a commercial facility on Joseph Hardin Drive in Dallas, Texas.
The accident occurred in June when the Georg Fischer employee and the truck driver were caught between a forklift and the flatbed trailer that was being loaded with plastic pipe.
“By failing to implement OSHA standards, these employers put its workers at risk. Ultimately, two people paid the price with their lives,” said Stephen Boyd, OSHA’s area director in Dallas. “It’s the employer’s responsibility to find and fix the hazards that expose workers to injuries and illnesses.”
OSHA investigated the accident and found 16 serious violations, including “failing to ensure that the manufacturer-provided safety latch was intact on the hook of the overhead hoist; ensure that buildings or other structures used for storage purposes had load ratings; guard platforms with standard railing; provide a lockout and tagout program to control energy sources; and ensure all workers complete required forklift training.”
In addition, OSHA cited the company for failing to block the wheels of powered industrial trucks that were parked on inclines along with various other safety violations.
OSHA has fined the companies $97,200. The companies have 15 business days to request a hearing.
To ask questions, obtain compliance assistance, file a complaint, or report workplace hospitalizations, fatalities or situations posing imminent danger to workers, the public should call OSHA’s toll-free hotline at 800-321-OSHA (6742) or the agency’s Dallas office at 214-320-2400.
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 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 http://www.osha.gov.