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Workplace Dangers Found at Allentown Bottling Factory

A bottling plant in Allentown has been cited by federal safety officials for more than a dozen dangers to workers – including electrical hazards and blocked exit doors.

And this is not the first time unsafe work conditions have been uncovered at A-Treat Bottling Company. Similar violations were found in 2008, 2010 and 2011.

Because of this alarming pattern, the U.S. Department of Labor's Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) hit the company with nearly $130,000 in fines.

“By continuing to disregard OSHA standards, A-Treat Bottling continues to put its workers at risk of serious injuries,” said Jean Kulp, director of OSHA's Allentown Area Office in a news release. “OSHA will not tolerate employers jeopardizing the safety and health of workers.”

There were 88,973 work illness and injury cases in Pennsylvania in 2009, according to the state's Bureau of Workers Compensation Information.

Sprain and strain injuries (41,058) accounted for 46.1 percent of those cases. More than 24 percent of injuries were cuts, lacerations and punctures (9.8 percent) and contusions, crushes, and bruises (14.4 percent).

Following are some of the safety violations found at A-Treat Bottling Company:

  • Electrical hazards
  • Failure to conduct baseline and annual audiograms
  • Failure to establish noise training and noise engineering controls
  • Lack of machine guards
  • Failure to ensure proper use of flexible cable
  • Improper material storage in an electrical service room
  • A defective forklift on a powered industrial truck

Workers or members of the public who know about a situation that poses an imminent danger to workers can call OSHA's toll-free hotline at 800-321-OSHA (6742) or the agency's Allentown office at 267-429-7542.

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