The citations against the glass container supplier come from the US Department of Labor's Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) following a complaint inspection in March at the Zanesville, Ohio plant.
OSHA cited Owens-Brockway Glass Container which is an indirect wholly-owned subsidiary of Owens-Illinois.
Owens-Brockway Glass Container owns all of the company's worldwide glass container operations.
Owens-Brockway resulted from the 1988 acquisition of Brockway, a glass and plastics company in the US but Owens-Illinois (O-I) is preferred for everyday business use.
Five serious violations included a lack of fall protection for workers on open-sided platforms; nonworking emergency lighting; failing to require the use of head protection for workers exposed to overhead hazards; lack of an emergency eyewashing station for exposure to corrosive materials; and the use of an electrical panel box that not was protected from water and damp conditions.
A spokeswoman for O-I told FoodQualityNews.com that they have reduced their injury rate by more than 50% globally since 2010 and are focussed on driving further improvements in safety.
“In North America, the overall number of incidents has decreased steadily over the last five years. New safety programs encourage employees to identify potential safety issues before they become hazards, and this has resulted in improved safety across O-I.”
Repeat violation addressed
A repeat violation for a lack of signs marking exit directions was one violation relating to the same issue at a facility in Atlanta in 2011.
She added: “The 2011 citation mentioned in the OSHA regional news release was at another O-I plant. That issue was addressed at that time.
“Our plants in North America hold regular safety meetings with employees and we have processes in place for sharing best practices across the company.”
The firm, with headquarters in Perrysburg, produces glass containers for the food and beverage industry.
"Owens-Brockway Glass Container has a responsibility to install properly working exit signs to protect workers on the job,"said Deborah Zubaty, OSHA's area director in Columbus.
"Employers who are cited for repeat violations demonstrate a lack of commitment to employee safety and health."