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Dana Rail Care Receives Additional Penalties Following Fatality

Feb. 24, 2020
The company is part of OSHA's Severe Violator Enforcement Program.

Dana Rail Care, a Wilmington, Del.-based rail service provider, is facing an additional $371,276 in fines following an OSHA inspection.

Investigators searched the company's tank rail car cleaning and repair facility in August 2019 after receiving a complaint of numerous safety and health hazards.

The agency found numerous electrical and explosion hazards, insufficient means of egress, use of defective powered industrial trucks, lack of medical clearance for respiratory protection use, improper use of respirators and inadequate secondary air supply and lack of signage in a silica-regulated area.

This is not Dana's first recent run-in with OSHA.

In May 2019, a 29-year-old Justin Fields was servicing a rail car containing crude oil sludge in Pittston, Penn. Fields lost consciousness died due to asphyxiation.

Following the accident, OSHA cited Dana Railcare for four willful and three serious violations for failing to protect employees from the hazards of entering permit-required confined spaces, and inadequate respiratory protection procedures. 

The agency also placed the company in its Severe Violator Enforcement Program. 

"Companies are legally required to test and monitor confined spaces for oxygen content before and during entry to confined spaces," said Mark Stelmack, OSHA Wilkes-Barre area director.

In the fatality case, the agency proposed more than $550,000 in penalties, which Dana Rail Care contested.

“Failure to comply with OSHA standards leaves employees vulnerable to dangers that can cause serious and potentially fatal injuries,” said OSHA Area Director Erin Gilmore, in Wilmington, Delaware. “Employers have an obligation to provide a safe and healthful workplace for their workers.”

The company has 15 business days from receipt of the citations and penalties to comply, request an informal conference with OSHA’s Area Director, or contest the findings before the independent Occupational Safety and Health Review Commission

About the Author

Stefanie Valentic

Stefanie Valentic was formerly managing editor of EHS Today, and is currently editorial director of Waste360.

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