You are safety supervisor for Wright Smelting, a company that operates industrial manufacturing facilities in the United States staffed with both employees and independent contractors. Your duties include ensuring corporate compliance with applicable .
Last week, a machine at one of Wright Smelting’s facilities exploded, injuring two workers. After the explosion, workers panicked and fled the facility. One exit was blocked by storage boxes, but the workers nonetheless escaped unscathed through other exits. Over the next month, dozens of workers returning to the facility began complaining of a strong, sweet aroma in the facility. Several also experienced severe nausea in the weeks after the accident.
Your investigation of the incident has determined that (1) that the explosion was a result of the temperature of the machine exceeding the manufacturer’s recommendations; (2) Wright Smelting safety procedures in place at the time of the accident allowed for such excessive temperature; and (3) gas was released into the facility by the explosion, including benzene.
- How will you determine what duties Wright Smelting owes its workers?
- How will you ascertain compliance with those duties?
- What is Wright Smelting required to report to OSHA?
- What is the procedure for recording and reporting injuries?
- Do all injuries need to be reported? If not, which ones do not need reporting?
- Assume that the two conclusions you reached as a result of your investigation represent the entirety of the results of your investigation to date. What else, if anything, should you investigate to ensure present and future compliance with federal law?
- Are there any potential workplace hazards that should have been identified?
- Would an emergency action plan or fire protection plan be needed?
- Did the manner by which the workers fled the facility suggest any deficiencies in Wright Smelting procedures?
- Does the hazard communication standard apply?
- What process would you use to determine if it does?