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Showing blog posts tagged with combustible dust

Workers Dying as Safety Rules Stall

Chemical Safety Board photo

AFL-CIO Health and Safety Director Peg Seminario told a Senate committee on Thursday that the current system for developing and issuing worker and workplace safety rules is:

A broken and dysfunctional system, which is failing to protect workers and costing workers’ lives.

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OSHA Fines American Crystal Sugar for Dangerous Build Up of Combustible Sugar Dust

Imperial Sugar plant where 14 workers were killed in a sugar dust explosion in 2008. U.S. Chemical Safety Board photo.

In October, American Crystal Sugar Co.—which has locked out its highly trained 1,300 member workforce since August 2011—has been assessed nearly $50,000 in fines by the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) for widespread, “high gravity” and “serious” safety violations, including accumulation of combustible dust and failure to lock out equipment during maintenance and repair.

High levels of dangerous and combustible sugar dust was cited in the 2008 Imperial Sugar explosion that killed 14 workers at its Port Wentworth, Ga., refinery.  

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Republicans’ Deadly Job Creation Plan

Republican bill blocks rule to cotrol combustible dust, the cause of the 2008 Imperial Sugar plant explsionh that killed 14 workers. Chemical Safety Board photo.

Republicans have a plan to create jobs and they’re going to stick by it whether it kills you or not. According to their twisted logic (shared by Mitt Romney, BTW) excessive federal regulation—especially workplace safety rules—is a major reason why unemployment is staying so stubbornly high. 

The answer according to House Republicans simple, just don’t allow any more regulations, from job safety to rules for big banks and public health. That’s theory behind the bill (H.R. 4078) the House passed last week that would bar any new federal rule until the jobless rate drops below 6 percent. How brilliant is that?

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