A manufacturer of cast-steel freight components faces a proposed fine of $610,034 after being accused by federal safety regulators of safety violations at its operation in Groveport.
The Department of Labor’s Occupational Safety and Health Administration said Wednesday that a 60-year-old worker at Amsted Rail Co. Inc. suffered a crushed leg in January after he was caught in a machine while doing maintenance. Also, at least four workers were said to have been exposed to excessive levels of silica, which can cause health problems.
Two inspections of the plant found six repeat violations, 19 serious violations and five other-than-serious safety and health violations, the agency said.
Amsted Rail also has been placed in the agency’s severe-violator enforcement program.
“Companies must ensure their workers are trained in proper machine-safety procedures and provided the necessary personal protective equipment to prevent injuries and illness on the job,” said Dorothy Dougherty, the agency’s deputy assistant secretary of labor, in a statement.
“Continuous monitoring of facilities and procedures are important components of an effective safety and health program.”
A message seeking comment left with Amsted Rail at its Chicago headquarters was not returned.
An OSHA inspection after the worker’s leg was crushed revealed instances of machine-safety violations, including failing to lock out machinery to prevent movement during servicing, the agency said. A subsequent inspection documented incidents of silica overexposure at the plant.
In all, the company is accused of failing to:
• Implement engineering controls to lower exposure to silica
• Affix locking devices to machine operating parts during maintenance
• Adequately guard machinery
• Implement a respiratory-protection program
• Guard floor openings and shafts to prevent falls
• Other violations.
Amsted Rail has 15 business days from receipt of the citations and penalties to comply, request an informal conference with the agency’s area director, or contest the findings.
Amsted Rail builds everything from wheels, axles and bearings to brake systems, bogies, bolsters and more.