Car Parts Manufacturer Fined $50,000 for Worker’s Fall Through Floor Opening
At an automotive parts manufacturing plant, a young worker was helping a co-worker change a die on a mechanical press. While unbolting the top portion of the die, he stepped into an open scrap chute and fell about 20 feet, suffering a broken bone. The MOL found that the press had six scrap chutes, which were guarded by interlocking doors when the press was running. But when the press was shut down for repair work or die changes, the chutes weren’t closed or guarded. In addition, there were no signs to warn workers of the hazards of the open scrap chutes and workers hadn’t been trained or instructed to close the chutes when working on the press. The manufacturer pleaded guilty to failing to ensure that a cover on an opening in a floor is secured in place. The court fined it $50,000 [Nartech Metal Products Inc., Govt. News Release, Oct. 7, 2016].