Seven northwest Ohio firms were slapped with $72,000 in fines recently by the U.S. Occupational Safety and Health Administration for serious safety violations, but the penalties were reduced to about $55,000, and two of the companies were able to save about $17,000 by agreeing to informal settlements.
The companies were cited for a total of 31 serious violations and eight less serious infractions that mostly carried no monetary penalty.
Northwestern Concrete Wall Co., of Sylvania Township, got the stiffest penalty, potentially $15,000, for three serious safety violations the agency cited at a Bancroft Street work site.
However, those penalties were reduced to $5,500 and further to $3,850 under terms of a proposed settlement. The violations were for failure to have guardrails or other protection against falls, failure to train employees to protect against falls, and unguarded protruding reinforcing steel. A total of $1,000 was assessed for a number of less serious infractions involving injury and illness records.
Toledo's Textileather Corp., a maker of vinyl products, was cited for $13,000 in penalties which were reduced to $7,560 in a proposed settlement.
Its three serious violations, from June 7 and 8, involved unsafe storage of flammable or combustible liquids. The firm was not fined for an employee using an inappropriate filter for protection from vapors.
Taylor Made Glass Ohio Inc., of Payne, in Paulding County, was issued $11,250 in penalties. The manufacturer of tempered safety glass was cited for six serious violations in March: failure to provide proper protective equipment, shields, and barriers; an unat-tended forklift with an unset parking brake; an unguarded foot pedal on a mechanical press; unsafe pedals on presses; a defective barrier guard on a press; and an improperly placed hand control.
Other firms cited by OSHA, and their penalties, were:
•Kingway, formerly Clymer Enterprises, a maker of industrial storage racks in Pandora in Putnam County, $9,525 for five serious violations in March, involving unsafe storage of flammable liquids, sprinklers not protected from paint spray, unguarded foot pedals on machinery, and unguarded gears.
•Haviland Plastic Products Co., a manufacturer of plastic pipe fittings in Haviland, Paulding County, $8,625 for four serious violations in April: an inoperative horn on a forklift, an unset parking brake on a forklift, failure to have an interlock device to prevent machine injury, and exposing workers to a potential hazard of falling.
•Transco Railway Products Inc., a Toledo railcar-repair facility, $8,075 for four serious violations in March: unlevel work surfaces, illegible data plate on a forklift, lack of inspection of a forklift, and worn hoses.
•James Leahey Construction, Swanton, $5,850 for five serious violations in May, including lack of protective helmets for workers, exposure to fall hazards, and lack of training for preventing falls.