After three separate fires at Quest Specialty Coating, the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) conducted an inspection of the facility for any known fire hazards. Instead of physical hazards, OSHA’s inspection uncovered inadequate emergency preparation and incomplete employee training, which can be just as dangerous.
Static electricity is relatively harmless under most circumstances, but accumulated static could spark and start a fire, especially if it meets compressed air or hazardous chemicals. Quest failed to develop a plan for static accumulation and discharge, increasing the chances of a spontaneous combustion.
The aerosol paint manufacturer also failed to conduct mandatory inspections on emergency fire control, bypass and relief valves to ensure they were safe. Worn or defective machine parts can fail unexpectedly and put workers at risk for serious injury.
OSHA cited Quest multiple times for failing to develop operating procedures and compile necessary process safety information for workers handling hazardous chemicals. Without the proper information, workers could cause a catastrophic spill or suffer harmful chemical exposure.
Who Is Responsible for Employee Safety Training?
After three separate fire incidents, Quest should have made emergency procedures a priority. Workers can panic if they are caught in an emergency situation without a plan, causing more damage to the facility and increasing the chances of worker injury.
Every employer must provide the training and equipment employees need to work safely. If you would like more information on workers’ compensation claims and workplace safety measures, follow the law firm of Larrimer & Larrimer on Facebook
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—Columbus Workers Comp Attorneys