Daeil USA Corp., a parts supplier for automakers like Hyundai Motor and Kia Motor, has been fined more than $170,000 by the U.S. Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA). An inspection of Daeil’s Valley, Alabama, facilities uncovered various safety issues, including 10 serious violations, five repeat offenses exposed in prior investigations, and one other-than-serious safety violation.
According to OSHA’s press release on the examination, the plant has repeatedly failed to provide locks to secure robots from accidental activation, create protective guards for workers during welding projects, and ensure that the conveyor line’s stop buttons were properly colored red. OSHA believes these fixes were not corrected in the past due to Daeil attempting to save costs.
Some of the most serious violations OSHA cited include exposing employees to both amputation and fall hazard and failure to develop a noise monitoring program or eye-washing facility for those working with dangerous chemicals. Daeil also failed to provide OSHA with proper workplace injury logs within the mandatory time limit.
Joseph Roesler, OSHA’s area director in Mobile, Ala., expressed concern in the OSHA press release, stating:
Management at this facility has adopted a productivity-over-safety mentality and repeatedly claims that it is ‘too expensive’ to address the safety hazards found in this workplace. The safety culture of this company must change immediately; protecting workers must always come before profit margins. OSHA offers free consultative services to assist companies on how to operate safely.
Daeil had 15 business days to respond to the citations. It can either comply with OSHA’s findings, request a conference with Mr. Roesler, or contest the findings altogether before the independent Occupational Safety and Health Review Commission. But it’s very clear that some safety changes at the company are badly needed.