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Section: 56.14100c
Date: 09/06/2013
District: SE
Negligence: Moderate
Injury or Illness: Unlikely
Injury or illness could be expected to be: Fatal
Significant and Substantial: No

Condition or Practice: The oxygen tank pressure gauge and the regulator pressure gauge attached to the oxygen regulator assembly located on the Ford F-Super Duty welding truck company #1121 were not being properly maintained. The oxygen tank valve was closed the line was bled and the tank pressure gauge displayed 150 pounds of tank air pressure and the regulator gauge displayed 15 pounds of air pressure. The oxygen and acetylene tanks are used daily by the welder and were not taqged out to prevent use. This exposes a miner to a serious injury by note knowing the accurate amount of regulated oxygen tank pressure in the oxygen tank.

Action to Terminate: Replaced regulator and gauges with serviceable gauges. Defective gauges were removed from the site and tagged out to be used for training.

Why this concerns you: Though the defective gauges were tagged out and removed from the property, the inspector asked that a written statement be provided stating that the gauges would not be returned to service, and, if used for training, would remain in the possession of the safety director for training purposes only. The written statement made by e-mail stated that the gauges were removed, tagged out, would remain in the personal possession of the safety director, and, when no longer being used for training, would be properly disposed of.
A second concern following the inspection of the welding truck was the request by the inspector to inspect an excavator which had been tagged out for 3 safety defects. The inspector stated that he wanted to inspect the excavator for other possible defects. When reminded that the MSHA Inspector's Handbook specifically states that, if a piece of equipment is tagged out of service or parked in an out-of-service area, the inspector is not to inspect that piece of equipment and to make a note of the fact. The inspector said that he would get back to the operator on that. He did not mention inspecting the excavator, but he did compare the pre-shift sheet noting the 3 defects and the mechanic's daily planner log to confirm that there was a record of defects being kept open until the repairs were made.

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