Saturday, May 13, 2017

Whirlpool Corp., Sauder Woodworking Co. and Salenbien Trucking and Excavating Inc. fined a combined $69,000 by OSHA for numerous safety violations

Two well-known northwest Ohio manufacturers and an excavating firm based in Michigan were fined a combined $69,000 for safety violations found at their work sites by federal inspectors this year.

Whirlpool Corp., which is based in Benton Harbor, Mich., was fined $19,918 after inspectors from the U.S. Occupational Safety and Health Administration found two “serious” category violations at the company’s washing machine plant in Clyde, Ohio. The violations involved employees injured while attempting to adjust a robot attached to a plastic injection molding machine.

Sauder Woodworking Co. of Archbold was fined $19,918 after inspectors found three “serious” violations. The citations said the area around a stainless steel roller where it meets a second rubber roller to coat wooden panels was not properly guarded and exposed employees to rotating parts, flying chips, and sparks. Also, a citation said the machine was not properly cut off from power prior to cleaning.

Salenbien Trucking and Excavating Inc., of Dundee, was fined $29,280 after inspectors found a “serious” category violation and a “repeat” violation at a company work site in Delta, Ohio. The repeat citation was for not protecting an employee from an excavation cave-in while installing a 24-inch sanitary sewer line in a 17-foot deep trench. Employees entering the trench were exposed to 7 feet of material collapsing above the trench box, OSHA said. The firm was cited for the same problem in 2016 at a site in North Baltimore, Ohio.

The companies can contest the fines and citations.