Lubbock recycling facility cited by OSHA for multiple safety, health violations

Published: Apr. 9, 2014 at 6:56 PM CDT
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Provided by U.S. Department of Labor

LUBBOCK, Texas – The U.S. Department of Labor's Occupational Safety and Health Administration has cited Jarvis Metals Recycling Inc. of Lubbock for 24 safety and health violations. With a proposed penalty of $64,400, the company was cited for exposing workers to unguarded machinery and electrical, noise, chemical and fall hazards at the company's Olive Avenue facility. OSHA's Lubbock District Office initiated the safety and health inspections in November 2013 under the agency's Site- Specific Targeting Program that directs enforcement resources to high-hazard workplaces where high injury and illness rates occur.

"It is unacceptable that an employer has chosen to expose workers to preventable hazards," said Joann Figueroa, area director in El Paso. "It is the employer's responsibility to find and fix dangers in the workplace. This employer failed to do that."

The 20 serious violations include failing to maintain electrical components in accordance with standards for safe electrical installations; guard industrial machinery; install a complete guardrail system; train workers about lead and cadmium hazards, as well as fall and struck-by hazards while operating powered industrial trucks with attachments; prevent overexposure to noise; provide a hearing conservation program; store compressed gas cylinders properly; and label stored propane properly. A serious violation occurs when there is substantial probability that death or serious physical harm could result from a hazard about which the employer knew or should have known.

The four other-than-serious violations include failing to remove damaged slings from use; issue and use approved respirators; establish a respiratory protection program; and repair damaged stairs. An other-than-serious violation is one that has a direct relationship to job safety and health, but probably would not cause death or serious physical harm.

The company, which employs about 63 workers statewide, was cited in April 2008 for 11 serious violations and one other-than-serious violation. Some of the current violations are similar to those found in the 2008 inspection.

Jarvis Metals Recycling has 15 business days from the receipt of its citations to comply, request an informal conference with OSHA's acting area director in El Paso, or contest the citations and proposed penalties before the independent Occupational Safety and Health Review Commission.

To ask questions, obtain compliance assistance, file a complaint, or report workplace hospitalizations, fatalities or situations posing imminent danger to workers, the public should call OSHA's toll-free hotline at 800-321-OSHA (6742) or the agency's El Paso Area Office at 915-534-6251.

Under the Occupational Safety and Health Act of 1970, employers are responsible for providing safe and healthful workplaces for their employees. OSHA's role is to ensure these conditions for America's working men and women by setting and enforcing standards, and providing training, education and assistance. For more information, visit