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New Wave Plastics has been cited for 13 safety violations after the U.S. Department of Labor’s Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) found a lack of training and personal protective equipment at the Cleveland facility, a recycler and plastic products supplier.

After receiving a complaint in November 2013, OSHA initiated an inspection of the facility. Proposed penalties total $51,800.

“Employers have a responsibility to train workers about hazards found in their facilities and to take precautions to prevent injuries and illnesses,” said Howard Eberts, OSHA’s area director in Cleveland. “Employers must ensure workers are protected from hazards and that they receive the required safety training.”

Twelve serious violations involve failing to train workers about wearing personal protective equipment; hazards associated with the use of chemicals in the work environment; forklift safety and fire extinguishers; and failure to provide fire-retardant clothing. New Wave Plastics was also cited for failing to develop a hearing conservation program, create a hazard workplace assessment and develop a hazard communication program. The presence of combustible dust was also found.

An OSHA violation is serious if death or serious physical harm could result from a hazard an employer knew or should have known exists.

One other-than-serious violation was cited for not providing required information to workers on OSHA’s respiratory standards. An other-than-serious violation is one that has a direct relationship to job safety and health, but probably would not cause death or serious physical harm.

New Wave Plastics has 15 business days from receipt of its citations and penalties to comply, request an informal conference with OSHA’s area director or contest the findings before the independent Occupational Safety and Health Review Commission.

Published in the June 2014 Edition of American Recycler News