Citation Details

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Section: 56.14107a
Date: 06/27/2011
District: NC
Negligence: Moderate
Injury or Illness: Unlikely
Injury or illness could be expected to be: Lost Workdays or Restricted Only
Significant and Substantial: No

Condition or Practice: The existing guard for the overhead furnace fan in the breakroom building is not adequate to prevent contact with the fan blades. The existing guard has openings approximately 2 to 3 inches wide and 6 inches long. The fan is located on the back of the furnace approximately 75 inches above the floor. The location of the furnace in the southeast corner of the breakroom and the location of the fan on the back side of the furnace make contact unlikely. This condition exposes miners to cuts, bruises and/or broken bones associated with contacting the rotating fan blades. The condition was not open or obvious because of the location. The mine operator was unaware of the condition.

Action to Terminate: The operator provided an adequate guard for the-furnace fan in the breakroom.

Why this concerns you: The hanging furnace is located in a corner of a break room. There is no easy access to the fan's opening in the rear in this corner. Workers do not walk behind or have any work related duties near this furnace. The opening is 75 inches from the floor and would necessitate a negligent action by a worker to make contact with the blades.

Abatement Suggestions From Industry

We were issued a similar citation last Fall at one of our plants in South West Ohio. Only citation and was issued at the very end of the inspection.
- posted on 06/29/2011

Not a member of Agg producers - but a journalist. This citation could be vacated for lack of "fair notice" or "adequate notice." It does not mean that the operator would not have to abate, but it means the citation would not go on their record. MSHA has inspected the place XX amount of times over XX many years and never cited the condition. The fan has obviously in place for a number of years, and has the "guards" that it was manufactured with, and a reasonably prudent person would not recognize a violation. Just a suggestion.
- posted on 07/19/2011

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