More Than $100,000 in Fines Proposed For Company Charged With Safety Violations in Miami Workers’ Compensation Case

A Florida company recently was fined more than $100,000 after federal regulators found it had committed 18 willful and serious safety violations at its manufacturing plant.

These kinds of violations could result in a workplace injury, and often require a Miami workers’ compensation claim to help an employee who has been injured because of company negligence.

Our Miami workers’ compensation lawyers recognize that most employees don’t want to cause problems at work and would be happy simply taking some sick time and trying to heal on their own. But for major injuries, including those that require hospital stays, workers shouldn’t take that responsibility on their own. Companies spend millions of dollars each year for workers’ compensation insurance and it’s there so it can be used.

Businesses have a responsibility to keep their employees safe. But when they don’t provide safety training and require people to work in environments where they have to worry about an injury, they must be held accountable. Many workplaces, especially in the construction and manufacturing fields, aren’t correctly set up to keep workers healthy, and that’s a concern.

In Clearwater recently, the United States Department of Labor’s Occupational Safety & Health Administration proposed fines of $109,800 to Model Screw Products Inc., a company that allegedly committed 18 safety violations in a case where PVC piping was being used for compressed air against safety regulations.

Federal regulators allege they discovered PVC piping that was being used to transport compressed air had ruptured three times in June, and in the third instance caused an employee hearing loss and head trauma. The federal agency levied a fine of $63,000 for using PVC piping to transport compressed air. The agency said the violation was willful because it was done while intentionally violating and disregarding the requirements of the law while being indifferent to workers’ safety.

The company was also cited for nine serious violations in which it is  being fined $42,3000 for not creating lockout procedures for equipment energy sources; having two locks on an emergency exit door; permitting employees to use inappropriate gloves for work; exposing workers to metal-cutting fluids; not locking energy sources on equipment while in use; failing to train workers on how to use fire extinguishers; using a saw blade without a safety guard; not training employees on the chemicals they use; and using compressed air at more than 30 pounds per square inch.

The company was also fined $4,500 for less-serious violations that were deemed other-than-serious by the government agency. The company can appeal the fines, request a formal hearing or an informal meeting with OSHA staff to discuss the fines.

The bottom line here is that many workers were put at danger because the company allegedly tried to cut corners and break the laws that were established to keep workers safe. In one case, a worker lost hearing because of this negligence. Companies must take the proper steps to keep their workers safe. Often they don’t and that’s when Miami workers’ compensation lawyers can help the employee get the care and any monetary reimbursement to which they may be entitled.

If you are seeking legal representation from a worker’s compensation lawyer in Miami, contact Barakat Law for a confidential appointment to discuss your rights. Call (305)-444-3114.

More Blog Entries:

Miami Construction Accident May Lead to Workers’ Compensation Claims: December 17, 2011