The U.S. Department of Labor's Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) has cited American Excelsior Company – based in Norwalk, Ohio – for machine guarding hazards after an employee required hospitalization when he suffered a crushed arm. Proposed penalties total $213,411.
OSHA investigators determined that the employee sustained injuries when the machine began operating while he removed product buildup. OSHA cited the company, which manufactures biodegradable erosion control blankets, for failing to develop or implement energy control procedures to prevent unintentional machine start-up during maintenance, and train employees in energy control procedures. American Excelsior Company received citations for similar violations at its Rice Lake, Wisconsin, plant in 2017. OSHA has also placed the company in its Severe Violator Enforcement Program.
"This employer failed to implement safety procedures to prevent known hazards," said OSHA Toledo Area Office Director Kimberly Nelson. "This injury could have been avoided if machine locking devices had been installed."