Teen Challenge of Florida Cited for 25 Safety and Health Violations; more than $228,000 in Fines
Pensacola, FL (WorkersCompensation.com) - Teen Challenge of Florida Inc., an international rehabilitation program, has been cited by the U.S. Department of Labor's Occupational Safety and Health Administration with 25 safety and health violations following an inspection of the company's facilities in Pensacola. OSHA initiated the July 2013 inspection after receiving a complaint alleging safety and health hazards. Proposed penalties total $228,600.
"This employer willfully disregarded worker safety by exposing workers to amputation hazards," said Brian Sturtecky, OSHA's area director in Jacksonville, Fla. "The hazards found during our inspection must be eliminated from this workplace immediately."
Three willful violations, with $162,000 in penalties, involve the employer exposing workers to amputations hazards by not providing machine guarding on the hand-fed ripsaws, the cutting heads of the routers and the abrasive wheels on the grinding wheel. 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.
Eighteen serious safety and health violations, with $66,600 in penalties, include failing to: provide workers first aid training in case of an emergency; provide a suitable eyewash facility; close unused openings in boxes, raceways, cabinets and equipment cases; have uniform step heights on a standard stairway and keep exit routes unobstructed. Workers were also exposed to numerous instances where the machines had no guarding, several electrical deficiencies were present and various tripping hazards were observed. 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.
Four other-than-serious violations were also cited for the company's failure to: illuminate exit signs; certify forklift operators as competent to operate powered industrial trucks safely; establish a respiratory protection program; and have forklift nameplates and markings in place and in legible condition. No monetary penalties were assigned for these violations. 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.
Teen Challenge of Florida in Pensacola offers assistance to adults ages 18 and older who are struggling with drug addiction, alcoholism and other life-controlling issues. The company has 15 business days from receipt of the citations and proposed penalties to comply, request a conference with OSHA's area director or contest the findings before the independent Occupational Safety & Health Review Commission.
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