OSHA Cites Aircraft Parts Maker for Widespread Safety Hazards

July 29, 2010
Agency alleges 44 serious violations at Connecticut plant.

The Occupational Safety and Health Administration has cited Whitcraft LLC for 44 alleged serious violations at its Eastford, Conn., aircraft parts manufacturing plant. The alleged fire, explosion, chemical, mechanical and electrical hazards were discovered during plant health and safety inspections initiated in January.

Proposed fines total $139,680.

According to the federal agency, serious citations were issued for numerous infractions, including multiple instances of unguarded in inadequately guarded moving machine parts that exposed workers to danger of injuries; electrical hazards that include misused electrical equipment and employees working on live electrical equipment; improperly designed processing equipment and dust collection systems; combustible materials stored adjacent to a heated press next to an exit; flammable liquids used near an ignition source; and inadequate fall protection.

"These sizable fines reflect the breadth and gravity of the hazardous conditions identified during our inspection at this workplace, conditions which should not have existed in the first place," said Paul Mangiafico, OSHA's acting area director in Hartford.

The firm has 15 days from receipt of its citations and proposed penalties to comply, contest the findings or meet with an area OSHA director.

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