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APWU Web News Articles

OSHA Charges USPS With Recurring Violations in New York

Web News Article #: 
056-2011

05/13/2011 - The Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) slammed the Postal Service with $93,500 in fines for five repeated safety violations at the Morgan Processing and Distribution Center (P&DC) in New York City.

During an inspection of the facility, OSHA discovered working hazards, including electrical control panels and exit routes blocked by bins, carts, and other equipment; fire extinguishers not mounted and ready for use, and equipment used by powered industrial trucks not maintained in good condition.

OSHA said that the USPS was cited for similar hazards at other facilities in New York in 2007 and 2010.

Part of a Pattern

OSHA’s latest findings in Manhattan follow in the wake of other safety hazards found at facilities across the country. Between January 2010 and December 2010, the agency issued the USPS more than 31 citations and over $6 million in fines for exposing employees to electrical hazards.

In January 2011, the agency slammed the Postal Service for under-recording workplace injuries and illnesses, reporting 242 instances of recordkeeping violations during inspections of 10 postal facilities.

In February 2011, the Postal Service was fined $70,000 after managers in Nashville allowed workers to use dock levelers that were known to be unsafe. An employee was seriously injured while using the defective equipment.

Additionally, in response to more than 170 worker complaints alleging ergonomic hazards at P&DCs nationwide, OSHA found that Delivery Bar Code Sorter (DBCS) machines pose a direct risk to workers’ health.