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Dis–Tran Steel LLC and Dis–Tran Wood Products Holdings LLC, two subsidiaries of Pineville-based Crest Industries Inc., are facing $72,000 in fines for 14 safety and health violations for exposing workers to combustible dust, electrical, welding and other hazards, said officials at the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA).

OSHA opened an inspection Oct. 18 at the companies’ shared facility on Cenla Drive in Pineville, LA, as part of the agency’s Site-Specific Targeting Program, as well as its national emphasis programs on amputations, primary metals, hexavalent chromium and combustible dust.

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Dis–Tran Steel, which employs 295 workers who manufacture steel utility poles, earned citations for six serious violations including a lack of required machine guarding, strain relief on the cords of electric hand controls and screens to protect workers from rays produced by welding operations in adjacent areas. One other-than-serious violation is failing to ensure electrical cords have ground pins.

Dis–Tran Wood Products, which employs 10 workers who manufacture wood cross arms for utility poles, was cited for five serious violations, including failing to provide dust-tight electrical enclosures to prevent wood dust explosions, provide access to an emergency eyewash station and ensure the live parts of an appliance end up enclosed. Two other-than-serious violations are failing to provide guardrails on fixed stairs and properly maintain exposed electrical wiring.

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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. 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.

“Employees were exposed to welding rays, which can cause serious eye injuries,” said Dorinda Folse, OSHA’s area director in Baton Rouge. “OSHA’s standards must be followed to prevent injuries and illnesses. Fortunately, no one was injured in this case.”

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