Johnson Controls Inc. is facing federal fines after the U.S. Department of Labor’s Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) investigated its facility in Holland, Ohio, according to JSOnline.com. Johnson Controls is accused of exposing workers to lead at the facility, which manufactures batteries. The proposed fines from OSHA total $188,600.
Johnson Controls said that the citations “are not appropriate in light of the actual conditions at the plant.” According to OSHA, the facility allowed workers to sweep up accumulated lead with a push broom and a hand brush at the end of shifts. Dry sweeping lead is a safety violation when other methods are available. OSHA also cited Johnson Controls for airborne lead levels that exceeded the permissible limits.
A Johnson Controls facility in Tampa was previously cited for also exposing workers to lead. This is a very serious citation and should never be taken lightly. OSHA will conduct follow up inspections at the facility due to the severity of the violations.
“We have a strong record of safety performance in this facility, with employee blood-lead levels below U.S. OSHA requirements,” said a Johnson Controls spokeswoman. She says the company plans to appeal the ruling.
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