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Employees at PCC Structurals-Groton faced the risk of chemical burns, fire, lacerations, amputations, electric shock and other injuries, said officials at the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA).

That is why the company is facing $104,000 in fines for 20 safety violations, officials said.

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“Our inspections identified a disturbing cross-section of hazards that could result in eye, face or body injuries, burns, or hearing loss for employees at the Groton location, as well as potential fires or explosions,” said Warren Simpson, OSHA’s area director in Hartford, CT. “It’s imperative for the health and well-being of its employees that PCC Structurals takes comprehensive, effective and ongoing corrective action to eliminate these hazards.”

The Groton, CT, facility is a steel-investment casting foundry that casts components for aerospace, energy, and commercial applications.

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Among the hazards identified during OSHA’s inspections:
• Lack of hand, face and body protection for employees working on or near electrical equipment
• Exposed live electrical parts; misused electrical equipment and power cords; inadequate working space around electrical panelboards; and an ungrounded extension cord
• Unguarded points of operation of hydraulic presses
• Failure to inspect energy control procedures periodically to prevent the unintended startup of machinery during maintenance and cleaning
• No program to inspect chain alloy slings used to lift materials and equipment
• Lack of emergency eyewashes where employees worked with corrosive chemicals
• Inadequate safety glasses for employees working with chemicals
• Inadequately labeled containers of hazardous chemicals
• Flammable liquids not stored in closed containers; improper disposal of combustible waste
• Unsecured compressed gas cylinders
• Incompatible chemicals stored together in a cabinet
• Employees exposed to high noise levels not provided with a choice of hearing protection

As a result of these conditions, OSHA cited the company for 20 serious violations of workplace safety and health standards with proposed penalties of $90,000. In addition, OSHA earlier cited the facility on Jan. 5 for two serious violations concerning inadequate fall protection equipment and an unprotected table saw. At the time OSHA issued fines of $14,000 for the two violations.

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