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OSHA cites Texas company for exposing workers to serious hazards

OSHA cites Texas company for exposing workers to serious hazards
OSHA cites Texas company for exposing workers to serious hazards

The Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) recently announced that it had cited Worldwide Oilfield Division Inc., a Houston-based company, with a number of citations stemming from violations to the agency's standards.

According to a government release, the Texas company was hit with eight serious, four repeat and one other-than-serious safety violation. The citations were issued after OSHA conducted an inspection in October, and found that workers at the firm were exposed to unguarded machinery and electrical hazards at its facility in Cunningham Road.

The inspection was performed by OSHA's Houston North Area Office under the agency's national emphasis program on amputations. Total penalties have risen to $71,200.

"Workers operating hazardous equipment, such as band saws and vertical and horizontal lathes without proper protection, are exposed to serious injuries, including amputations," said David Doucet, OSHA's area director at its Houston North office.

The inspection found that the company failed to provide the appropriate machine guarding equipment, including guards for band saws and vertical/horizontal turret lathes, and did not securely anchor all electrical cords, panels, and boxes, which had the possibility to lead to electrocution. These hazards led to the serious violations, which are deemed as such when there is "substantial probability that death or serious physical harm could result from a hazard about which the employer knew or should have known," according to OSHA.

The repeat safety violations were given out for the company's failure to properly maintain abrasive wheel machines,and for not ensuring all electrical cords were outfitted with a component that provides strain relief when cords go for long period without being a part of OSHA maintenance management programs.

OSHA stated that repeat violations occur when a company "previously has been cited for the same or a similar violation of a standard, regulation, rule or order at any other facility in federal enforcement states within the last five years."

The company also received other-than-serious violations for not keeping all electrical equipment free of obstacles.

Keeping all asset maintenance documents organized can greatly expedite the OSHA inspection process, keeping costly downtime to a minimum. 

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