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OSHA: Aluminum Services LLC Continues to Disregard Worker Safety

Jan. 28, 2020
The company has a history of being cited since 2011.

Despite a tumultuous relationship with OSHA, Aluminum Shapes LLC continues to disregard worker safety.

The Delair, N.J.-based aluminum manufacturer is facing $169,524 in penalties following an August 2019 incident in which a worker was hospitalized.

“Aluminum Shapes continues to disregard their legal responsibility to comply with safety and health standards,” said OSHA Area Director Paula Dixon-Roderick, in a statement. “Employers have an obligation to provide a safe and healthful workplace for their workers.”

The agency cited the company for one serious and three repeat violations after a steel plate fell from an uninspected crane onto an employee's foot. In addition to not inspecting the crane on an annual basis, Aluminum Shapes did not report this injury to OSHA within 24 hours and failed to balance and secure the load. 

Aluminum Shapes has a long-standing history of noncompliance with OSHA going back to 2011. In January 2017, inspectors found 51 health and safety violations and discovered that two employees had been injured previous to the investigation, but it was not reported.

In the first case, the worker experienced chemical burns after entering a tank to drain residual sludge containing dehydrated sodium hydroxide, aluminum oxide and decomposed metal. Despite employees reporting to supervisors that they were experiencing chemical burns to their skin, the workers were directed to re-enter the tank, suffering further injuries.

The second incident occurred when a machine operator suffered a broken pelvis after being caught between the unguarded moving parts of a metal fabrication machine, according to OSHA.

Willful violations were given for failure to provide appropriate personal protective equipment; conduct air monitoring prior to permit-required confined space entry; have an attendant during permit-required confined space entry; complete a required confined space entry permit to identify, evaluate and control hazards in the space; provide confined space training; utilize proper lockout/tagout (control of hazardous energy) procedures; provide workers with locks and hardware to lock out equipment being serviced, maintained, or repaired; lack of specific procedures for the use of blocking devices; utilize group lockout procedures and train workers in lockout/tagout. 

OSHA also cited the company for repeat violations including fall hazards, lack of stair rails, machine guarding and electrical hazards. Aluminum Services LLC also received serious citations for inadequate ladders, inappropriate respiratory and hearing protection, insufficient entry permits, and lack of machine guarding and hazardous chemical training. In total, OSHA proposed penalties of $1,922,895.

“Despite its lengthy OSHA history, Aluminum Shapes still does not comply with federal safety and health standards,” said Paula Dixon-Roderick, director of OSHA’s Marlton Area Office in a 2017 statement. “These hazards leave workers vulnerable to the risk of serious injury and possible death.”

OSHA has now placed the company in the Severe Violator Enforcement Program for repeated safety failures. 

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