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NY company facing nearly $107 million fine for failing to fix hazards

A New York sheet metal fabrication plant in Buffalo is facing a proposed $106,800 fine because they allegedly failed to correct known, recurring workplace hazards.  The allegations are being made by the U.S. Department of Labor’s Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA).


According to OSHA, the company – Serivice Manufacturing Group Inc. – was cited for 12 safety violations in 2009 at their Scajaquada Street plant.  Six months later, the 8 of the 12 violations were still present.


The safety violations included: uninspected overhead cranes that were lifting slings and fire extinguishers, containers that were not electrically interconnected while they were dispensing flammable liquids, gauges missing on paint spray bottles, and failures to determine if employees were medically fit to wear a respirator.


These eight violations led to a proposed $100,500 fine.  However, OSHA found additional violations at a later investigation: failure to close unused openings in electrical boxes and cabinets, failure to set up a fire extinguisher education program, and failure to post the last OSHA citations issued.


This bumped the fine up to a proposed $106,800.  The company has 15 business days to comply, meet with OSHA, or contest the findings.  Unresolved hazards like those at the Scajaquada Street plant could lead to serious workplace injuries and unnecessary workers’ compensation claims.