Franklin Park firm, Oak Brook parent company pay asbestos penalty
Updated: June 11, 2012 8:10AM
A metal manufacture in Franklin Park has paid reduced fines after being cited by the Occupational Safety and Health Administration for exposing workers to asbestos.
On Friday, A.M. Castle paid a $63,500 penalty related to activities at Castle Metals, said OSHA spokeswoman Rhonda Burke. That’s down from $127,600 that OSHA originally proposed.
OSHA cited Castle Metals, 3400 Wolf Road, in early April with 22 “serious health violations.”
The agency defines that as “when there is a substantial probability that death or serious physical harm could result from a hazard about which the employer knew or should have known.”
“Approximately 121 employees worked directly with asbestos-coated materials,” Burke said.
The OSHA inspection was initiated by a complaint.
According to OSHA, violations at Castle Metals included: failing to determine the presence, location and quantity of asbestos-containing or presumed asbestos-containing material; not putting warning labels on asbestos-containing piping; not providing a regulated area for asbestos removal operations; not monitoring employees and the work area for asbestos exposure during the removal process; and not using a high-efficiency vacuum to collect debris and dust during removal.
Additionally, asbestos-awareness training was not provided to employees performing the work, and respirators were not used., OSHA said. The Franklin Park employer also did not provide or require the use of protective clothing or a decontamination room or area for workers.
Castle Metals is part of A.M. Castle, a publicly traded company with headquarters in Oak Brook. A.M. Castle “affirmed” the citations in April meetings with OSHA, Burke said.
“We resolved without admitting any wrongdoing,” said Robert Perna, general consul for A.M. Castle. “We agreed to correct any alleged violations.”