December 2019 Enforcement

Two managers were sentenced to probation and ordered to pay fines for conspiracy to obstruct justice in an OSHA fatality investigation.


The U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Ohio has sentenced Brian L. Carder and Paul Love – former managers at Extrudex Aluminum’s plant in North Jackson, Ohio – after each pleaded guilty to conspiracy to obstruct justice charges. The court’s action follows an investigation by the U.S. Department of Labor’s Office of Inspector General (OIG) that found the managers attempted to hide information and intimidate employees from speaking to the Department’s Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) investigators about an employee fatality in October 2012.

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A newspaper publisher was cited and fined $145,858 after a worker’s finger was amputated.


The U.S. Department of Labor’s Occupational Safety and Health Administration  has cited BH Media Group Inc. for exposing employees to amputation hazards after an employee suffered an injury at the Opelika, Alabama, facility. The company faces $145,858 in penalties.

An employee suffered a finger amputation after their hand was caught in a stacking machine that unintentionally started while being serviced. OSHA cited the company for failing to effectively guard machinery, and develop and implement written procedures to prevent unintentional start-up during service or maintenance. The agency conducted the inspection in conjunction with the National Emphasis Program on Amputations.

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A chemical manufacturer faces $1,591,176 in penalties after a plant explosion resulted in four fatalities.


The U.S. Department of Labor’s Occupational Safety and Health Administration  has cited AB Specialty Silicones LLC for 12 willful federal safety violations after four employees suffered fatal injuries in an explosion and fire at the company’s Waukegan, Illinois, plant on May 3, 2019. The company faces $1,591,176 in penalties. OSHA has placed the silicon chemical products manufacturer in the Severe Violator Enforcement Program.

OSHA investigators determined AB Specialty Silicones failed to ensure that electrical equipment and installations in the production area of the plant complied with OSHA electrical standards, and were approved for hazardous locations. The company also used forklifts powered by liquid propane to transport volatile flammable liquids, and operated these forklifts in areas where employees handled and processed volatile flammable liquids and gases, creating the potential for ignition.  

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A fencing company was fined $370,298 after repeatedly exposing workers to amputation hazards when using machinery.

New Jersey

The U.S. Department of Labor’s Occupational Safety and Health Administration  has again cited Aruvil International Inc. for multiple workplace violations – including four willful safety citations – at the company’s Pennsauken, New Jersey, facility. The commercial and residential fencing company faces $370,298 in penalties.

OSHA initiated an inspection in April 2019, as a follow-up to a prior inspection. OSHA cited Aruvil International Inc. for willfully violating federal standards related to lockout/tag out procedures to prevent machine startup, machine guards and proper warehouse lighting. OSHA also cited the company for an obstructed loading dock, and blocked electrical disconnects for forklift truck chargers.

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A utility pole company was cited $18,564 following a heat-related fatality.


The U.S. Department of Labor’s Occupational Safety and Health Administration  has cited Smith Mountain Investments LLC after a heat-related fatality at a jobsite in Inman, Nebraska.

An employee became ill while performing extreme physical activity in excessive temperatures in July 2019 and later died. OSHA cited the Anson, Maine-based company for two serious safety and health violations for failing to protect workers from hazards associated with heavy physical activity in extreme heat conditions, and ensure medical care was available. The utility pole inspection company faces $18,564 in penalties.

“Death from heat related illness is a preventable tragedy,” said OSHA Omaha Acting Area Director Matt Thurlby. “When working in dangerously high temperatures, employers are responsible for implementing a heat safety program that includes modifying work practices, using controls to reduce heat stress and requiring water and rest breaks in shaded areas.”

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