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Wednesday, July 6, 2016

OSHA fines Johns Manville after employee suffers hand amputation

Employer name: Johns Manville
Inspection site: 200 West Industrial Blvd., Cleburne, Texas 76033
Citations issued: June 29, 2016
Investigation findings: The U.S. Department of Labor's Occupational Safety and Health Administration began an inspection Feb. 11, 2016, after reports that a machine severed an employee's hand at the Johns Manville Cleburne manufacturing facility as he tried to clear a jam in a machine. Investigators issued citations for two repeat and three serious violations. The agency issued repeat citations for lacking machine guards on a conveyor to protect workers from in-running nip point hazards and for allowing an unguarded and protruding shaft to project more than one-half its diameter. OSHA cited the company for the same or similar violations at its locations in Ohio and New Jersey.
Serious violations include:
  • Energy-control procedures did not clearly outline steps for shutting down, isolating, blocking and securing machines to control hazardous energy.
  • When locking out for energy control, the company's periodic inspection did not include a review between the inspector and each authorized employee.
  • The employer failed to train authorized employees adequately to recognize hazards associated with hazardous energy.
OSHA initiated the investigation under a National Emphasis Program for Amputation.
Proposed Penalties: $49,600
Quote: "Johns Manville's flawed procedures to control hazardous energy sources and a lack of machine guards ultimately led to an amputation," said Jack A. Rector, OSHA's area director in Fort Worth. "The company should have evaluated its lockout/tagout program and provided proper machine guarding. It is simply unacceptable that a 34-year-old father of four young children suffered a gruesome injury, and has had life forever changed by an incident that was preventable."
Jon L. Gelman of Wayne NJ is the author of NJ Workers’ Compensation Law (West-Thomson-Reuters) and co-author of the national treatise, Modern Workers’ Compensation Law (West-Thomson-Reuters). For over 4 decades the Law Offices of Jon L Gelman  1.973.696.7900  has been representing injured workers and their families who have suffered occupational accidents and illnesses.

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