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OSHA Hits Powder Coatings Firm

Friday, May 23, 2014

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A Wisconsin powder coatings facility faces $51,800 in federal penalties for allegedly exposing workers to toxic substances.

Power Coatings LLC, of Janeseville, WI, has been cited for 14 serious safety violations, the U.S. Occupational Safety and Health Administration announced Tuesday (May 22).

OSHA issued the citations after a complaint inspection in December 2013.


Power Coatings LLC in Janeseville, WI, is accused of 14 serious safety violations; fines total $51,800.

Power Coatings did not respond to a request for comment Thursday (May 22).

Dangerous Exposure Daily

"Workers were exposed daily to dangerous hazards, many of which could be prevented with the use of proper personal protective equipment and respiratory protection," said Kim Stille, OSHA's area director in Madison.

"The company must identify and correct workplace hazards and provide workers with required safety training."

The serious violations allege failure to:

  • Conduct a personal protective equipment hazard assessment;
  • Provide and require PPE for skin and eye hazards from methyl ethyl ketone vapors and powder coating dust;
  • Have a written respiratory protection or hazard communication program;
  • Provide a medical evaluation to determine the employee's ability to use a respirator;
  • Fit test employees using tight-fitting facepiece respirators;
  • Store respirators to protect them from damage;
  • Train workers on the programs and hazards found in the workplace; and
  • Conduct air monitoring for methyl ethyl ketone, dust and other respiratory hazards.

OSHA says Power Coatings exposed workers to toxic substances and serious hazards on a daily basis.

Details of the violations were unavailable Thursday.

A serious violation is one that could result in death or serious injury.

No Prior Record

The company operates an automated paint line with the ability to paint components up to 24 feet long by 10 feet high, according to its website.

Based on a search of OSHA records, this is the first time the company has been issued citations.

Power Coatings has 15 business days from receiving the citations and penalties to comply, request an informal conference with OSHA's area director, or contest the findings.


Tagged categories: Health and safety; OSHA; Personal protective equipment; Regulations; Respiratory Protection Standard

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