Cleveland Employer Faces $155,500 Fine After Failing To Address Common Workplace Safety Hazards

In the wake of a December accident in which a worker nearly lost a hand, Cooper Standard Automotive's facility in Cleveland is facing citations and $155,500 in proposed fines from OSHA.

OSHA began its investigation of the automotive product manufacturer after the agency received a complaint alleging that an employee was injured while operating a plastic injection mold machine that was not properly guarded. The employee sustained injuries requiring surgery to a nearly amputated hand. As a result of the investigation, OSHA cited the business for machine guarding and energy lockout/tagout deficiencies as well as for failure to provide safety training, and other electrical hazards.

"Companies that use presses and similar power equipment know full well the risk to workers these machines can pose," said U.S. Secretary of Labor Elaine L. Chao. "OSHA's first commitment is to protect workers from tragic workplace accidents. We stand ready to assist employers to make their workplaces safe, but we will fully enforce standards when we must."

Cooper employs more than 23,000 workers at 55 manufacturing facilities in 13 countries. Cooper Standard Automotive was established in 1937 and is part of the North American Sealing Systems Division of Cooper Tire & Rubber Co. headquartered in Finley, Ohio. Cooper has two plants in Cleveland.

The company has 15 working days from receipt of the citations to appeal before the independent Occupational Safety and Health Review Commission.

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