An Auburn, Ala., auto parts manufacturer faces $106,000 in penalties for a number of federal safety violations that put its workers at risk of amputation, struck-by injuries, and getting caught in machinery.
Violations at the Pyongsan America Inc. facility in Auburn may also land the manufacturer in the Occupational Safety and Health Administration’s (OSHA) Severe Violator Program, which would put it under greater regulatory scrutiny.
OSHA devotes more of its time and resources to monitoring companies categorized as severe violators than it does with most other companies.
According to OSHA, its January inspection of the Pyongsan facility, which makes heating, ventilation, and air conditioning hoses for Hyundai, Kia, Fiat-Chrysler, and General Motors, turned up 11 safety violations, including four that the company had been cited for previously.
The citations for repeat violations involved Pyongsan’s failure to develop and implement procedures to prevent machinery from suddenly starting up during maintenance or servicing; failure to properly review energy control procedures for equipment with multiple energy sources; failure to properly train employees working with hazardous energy sources; and failure to install proper machine guarding to protect workers from amputation and crushing hazards.
OSHA also issued Pyongsan two serious violations for not requiring workers to disconnect power on equipment when changing out machine parts and for exposing employees to amputation hazards with ineffective machine guarding on mechanical power presses.
The same inspection also prompted OSHA to cite Surge Staffing LLC of Auburn with three serious violations for its failure to protect temporary employees it provided to Pyongsan from amputation and crushing hazards and unguarded machinery. Surge placed about 50 workers with Pyongsan.
“Pyongsan America continues to put workers, both permanent and temporary, at risk of serious injury or death by exposing them to serious workplace hazards,” said Joseph Roesler, OSHA’s area director in Mobile. “Employers must take responsibility for worker safety every day. They shouldn’t wait until an OSHA inspection, or worse, when someone is hurt, to evaluate and correct workplace deficiencies.”