August 4, 2016
Employer name: Golden Dragon Copper Inc., doing business as GD Copper USA Inc.
Inspection site: 405 GD Copper Drive, Pine Hill, Alabama 36769
Citations issued: The U.S. Department of Labor’s Occupational Safety and Health Administration issued citations to GD Copper for two willful, one repeat, nine serious and two other-than-serious safety violations.
Investigation findings: The agency issued willful citations for exposing employees to slip, trip and fall hazards and allowing employees to work on equipment without following proper safety procedures to protect them from hazardous stored energy. One repeat violation relates to failing to provide training on hazardous energy sources and the methods available to secure the energy prior to performing maintenance on equipment.
The serious violations relate to:
Exposing employees to unguarded machine parts and equipment.
Putting workers in danger of falls due to missing safety rails.
Failing to evaluate a permit required confined space prior to workers entering.
Not conducting annual audits of the energy control procedures.
Exposing workers to electric shock hazards.
The other violations involve not ensuring employees were trained in first aid and failing to provide training on an emergency action plan and fire extinguishers.
Proposed penalties: $196,900
Quote: “Our inspection has identified numerous serious safety hazards that put employees at risk of injury or death,” said Joseph Roesler, OSHA’s area director in Mobile. “GD Copper must be more proactive in identifying these hazards and taking action to correct them. Employers should not wait for an OSHA inspection or an incident to occur before they assess their workplace to ensure workers at protected.”
The citations can be viewed at: www.osha.gov/ooc/citations/GDCopper_1125762.pdf
GD Copper manufactures tubing for heating and cooling systems, appliances, refrigeration and plumbing. Based in China, the company employs approximately 390 workers in Pine Hill. The employer has 15 business days from receipt of its citations and proposed penalties to comply, request a conference with OSHA’s area director, or contest the findings before the independent Occupational Safety and Health Review Commission.
To ask questions; obtain compliance assistance; file a complaint or report amputations, eye loss, workplace hospitalizations, fatalities or situations posing imminent danger to workers, the public should call OSHA’s toll-free hotline at 800-321-OSHA (6742) or the agency’s Mobile Area Office at 251-441-6131.
Under the Occupational Safety and Health Act of 1970, employers are responsible for providing safe and healthful workplaces for their employees. OSHA’s role is to ensure these conditions for America’s working men and women by setting and enforcing standards, and providing training, education and assistance. For more information, visit http://www.osha.gov.