U.S. Department of Labor Cites Alabama Auto Parts Manufacturer For Amputation Hazards After Employee Injury

AUBURN, AL – The U.S. Department of Labor’s Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) has cited Strahle + Hess USA Inc. for exposing employees to amputation hazards at the company’s Auburn, Alabama, facility. The auto parts manufacturer faces $140,554 in penalties.

An employee suffered a partial finger amputation while attempting to remove material from a lamination machine. OSHA cited the manufacturer for allowing employees to operate machinery without proper guarding, and for failing to develop and train employees on lockout/tagout procedures to control hazardous energy, lockout energy sources, and notify OSHA within 24 hours of the employee’s hospitalization, as required by law.

OSHA conducted the inspection in conjunction with the Agency’s National Emphasis Program on Amputations and Regional Emphasis Program for Safety Hazards in Auto Parts Industry.

“This company exposed workers to hazards that put them at risk for serious injuries,” said OSHA Mobile Area Director Jose A. Gonzalez. “Companies must continually evaluate and correct workplace safety deficiencies to ensure workers return home safe and healthy at the end of each day.”

OSHA’s Safeguarding Equipment and Protecting Employees from Amputations booklet explains how employers and workers can recognize and control amputation hazards, and what safety methods to use to prevent specific machine hazards.

The company has 15 business days from receipt of the citations and proposed 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.

Under the Occupational Safety and Health Act of 1970, employers are responsible for providing safe and healthful workplaces for their employees. OSHA’s role is to help ensure these conditions for America’s working men and women by setting and enforcing standards, and providing training, education, and assistance. For more information, visit https://www.osha.gov.

The mission of the Department of Labor is to foster, promote, and develop the welfare of the wage earners, job seekers, and retirees of the United States; improve working conditions; advance opportunities for profitable employment; and assure work-related benefits and rights.

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