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Sheboygan, Wisconsin-based Nemak USA Inc. is facing $26,520 in fines for exposing workers to metalworking fluids used on aluminum after three employees were diagnosed with occupational hypersensitivity pneumonitis, a debilitating lung disease.

The company is facing two serious health violations and the $26,520 in fines are the maximum penalty allowed by law.

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OSHA initiated an inspection at the company’s automotive aluminum castings manufacturing facility in August lsat year after receiving a medical referral.

OSHA cited the company for failing to protect the employees from exposure to airborne metalworking fluids during machining operations, and failing to evaluate respiratory hazards.

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“Employers using these materials in their production must ensure that good hygiene practices are followed, and fluids are properly managed to protect employees from potential lung damage,” said Appleton Area Office Director Robert Bonack.

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