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OSHA cites Pennsylvania company for workplace hazards

The concern about workplace safety and the aim to minimize the number of accidents occurring in the workplace led to the creation of the Occupational Safety and Health Administration within the U.S. Department of Labor. The objective of OSHA is to ensure a reduction in workplace safety hazards and implement programs related to workers' health and safety, thereby curbing any work injury in the process.

A worker who has been injured on the job suffers not only from the injury but also financially because he or she is generally unable to earn a living while recovering from the injury. If the workplace accident that caused the injury can be attributed to the employer's negligence, the worker would be entitled to receive appropriate workers' compensation benefits from the employer.

OSHA takes its responsibilities seriously and enforces certain standards and duties for the employers to promote workplace safety. In the event of a violation of these standards by an employer, that employer can be charged with heavy fines. This was the case recently in Pennsylvania, where a company was cited by OSHA for as many as 26 alleged safety violations. Of those violations, seven are repeat violations, which means that the company had been cited for them within the last 5 years; 16 are serious, signifying that they may cause serious harm or a fatality to a worker and the employer is aware of the situation; while the remaining three are not considered as serious.

The company will have to pay a penalty of approximately $163,240 if the violations are proven. The company's choices are to comply, request an informal consultation with the OSHA area director or challenge the citations before the Occupational Health and Safety Review Commission. Given the magnitude and number of the alleged violations and the amount of the fine, the company may wish to consider seeking experienced legal help for advice and guidance.

Source:, "PA Foundry Gets Hefty Fine for Serious Repeat Violations," Feb. 26, 2014.

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