The U.S. Department of Labor's Occupational Safety and Health Administration has cited Cleveland Granite & Marble for 21, including three willful, health violations for failing to maintain a hearing conservation program and other hazards following a complaint inspection initiated in August. Proposed penalties total $98,000.
The three willful violations involve failing to maintain a hearing conservation program and to train workers who operate powered industrial trucks and perform daily and monthly crane inspections to ensure the equipment is in safe working order. A willful violation is one committed with intentional, knowing or voluntary disregard for the law's requirements, or with plain indifference to worker safety and health.
A total of 15 serious violations involve failing to provide personal protective equipment; maintain clear exit routes; develop and implement a lockout/tagout program for energy sources; properly guard pulleys and saws; develop and implement a hazard communication program; provide electrical cords, cables and ground fault circuit interrupters suitable for use in wet areas; and train workers in safety and health matters. A serious violation occurs 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.
Three other-than-serious violations were cited for failing to develop and implement a respiratory protection program, including medical evaluations, fit-testing and training, and to inspect powered industrial trucks and clearly mark a pendant control box for a crane. 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.
"Employers, such as Cleveland Granite & Marble, have a responsibility to implement health and safety programs that protect workers from known hazards," said Howard Eberts, OSHA's area director in Cleveland. "Taking proactive measures, such as requiring the use of personal protective equipment and performing equipment inspections, can prevent serious injury in the workplace."
Prior to this inspection, Cleveland Granite & Marble had been inspected seven times since 1996. The company has 15 business days from receipt of the citations to comply, request an informal conference with OSHA's area director, or contest the citations and penalties before the independent Occupational Safety and Health Review Commission.
To ask questions, obtain compliance assistance, file a complaint, or report workplace hospitalizations, fatalities or situations posing imminent danger to workers, the public should call OSHA's toll-free hotline at 800-321-OSHA (6742) or the agency's Cleveland Area Office at 216-615-4266.
Under the Occupational Safety and Health Act of 1970, employers are responsible for providing safe and healthful workplaces for their employees. OSHA's role is to ensure these conditions for America's working men and women by setting and enforcing standards, and providing training, education and assistance. For more information, visit http://www.osha.gov.