After three workers were seriously injured in an explosion, the U.S. Department of Labor’s Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) have cited Fox Valley Systems Inc. for 26 safety violations, according to an OSHA regional news release. In addition to the 26 safety violations, OSHA has also proposed $262,000 in penalties for Fox Valley Systems and placed it in its Severe Violator Enforcement Program.
“In part, workers were injured in this tragic explosion because they could not get out quickly because of blocked exit doors,” said Nick Walters, OSHA regional administrator in Chicago. “This is unacceptable for any business, and especially for one handling hazardous materials and chemicals daily. OSHA is committed to ensuring best work practices to prevent endangering the safety and health of workers.”
The explosion and fire that injured the three workers and led to Fox Valley Systems’ punishment occurred on March 6 at its Cary, Illinois aerosol paint manufacturing plant. The explosion resulted from flammable vapors igniting inside the production facility. The explosion led to the fire, which spread from the production facility to the interconnected aerosol-propellant charging rooms, causing heavy damage throughout.
Fox Valley Systems’ 26 violations included both willful and serious violations. A willful violation is any violation committed with intentional, knowing or voluntary disregard for, or plain indifference to, employee safety and health. Willful violations committed by Fox Valley Systems include:
- Exit door locked from the outside
- Workers operating propane-powered industrial trucks in restricted areas, such as the production area
- Failure to provide unobstructed exit routes
A serious violation is any violation committed when there is substantial probability that death or serious physical harm could result from a hazard about which the employer knew or should have known. Serious violations committed by Fox Valley Systems include:
- Various electrical equipment deficiencies
- Inadequate storage of flammable liquids
Please read our website for more information about workplace safety violations and what you can do if you suspect your employer is violating your rights. Workers’ comp laws are much more complicated than you may realize, but for over eight decades, our Columbus workers’ comp lawyers have been successfully helping injured workers with their workers’ compensation and Social Security disability claims.
Contact our firm today at (614) 221-7548 for more information or to schedule a free consultation.
Larrimer & Larrimer, LLC
—Columbus Workers Comp Attorneys