Alloy manufacturer to pay $69K for exposing workers to toxic beryllium

Oct. 16, 2023
The exposure happened when workers were performing handheld grinding and parts fabrication operations on beryllium aerospace components.

An OSHA investigation has determined that IBC Engineered Materials Inc., which conducts business as IBC Advanced Alloys Inc., failed to prevent employees from being exposed to beryllium. The manufacturing company, which fabricates advanced alloys, subjected workers to airborne concentrations of beryllium. The exposure happened when workers were performing handheld grinding and parts fabrication operations on beryllium aerospace components. In addition, the IBC did not conduct follow-up beryllium exposure monitoring, keep surfaces free of beryllium, make sure protective clothing was beryllium free, and dispose of contaminated rags, gloves, and paper towels. The company has been cited for 11 serious violations and one other-than-serious violation and will have to pay $69,251 in penalties.

In a recent quote, OSHA Area Director Sarah Carle said, “Beryllium is an important material needed in aerospace, defense and other industries, but is a highly toxic metal. Workers who inhale beryllium are at an increased risk of developing serious adverse health effects including chronic beryllium disease and lung cancer. OSHA’s inspection found IBC Advanced Alloys Inc. failed to provide adequate and effective safeguards required to protect employees against this harmful hazard.”