Three workers at Sheboygan, Wisc.-based Nemak USA were diagnosed with occupational hypersensitivity pneumonitis, a debilitating lung disease.
After a medical referral, OSHA inspected the automotive aluminum castings manufacturing facility in August 2018 and found the company failed to protect its employees.
“Employers using these materials in their production must ensure that good hygiene practices are followed, and fluids are properly managed to protect employees from potential lung damage,” said Appleton Area Office Director Robert Bonack.
OSHA discovered Nemak USA failed to evaluate respiratory hazards. Because of this, the company's workers were exposed to metalworking fluids used on aluminum during the manufacturing process.
The company faces penalties of $26,520 for two serious health violations, the maximum penalty allowed by law.
Nemak USA has 15 days to respond to the findings through compliance, requesting an informal conference with OSHA’s area director or by contesting the findings before the independent Occupational Safety and Health Review Commission.