Lead Exposure IS Preventable

Don’t Let Lead Get You Fined. Lead Exposure IS Preventable.

Lead overexposure can lead to kidney damage, anemia and cardiovascular health issues. Lead overexposure is one of the most commonly found over-exposures in the workplace. Nearly 50,000 workers die because of occupational exposure to lead, asbestos and other substances.  In fact, hazardous concentrations of lead can be present in food, water or air.

An employee of Martin Foundry, Co reportedly had elevated blood lead levels, which initiated an OSHA inspection in early 2015. To make matters worse, Martin Foundry Co repeatedly refused OSHA inspectors to conduct an inspection. Ultimately, a US District Judge found Martin Foundry Co and its safety representatives in criminal contempt and ordered them to comply with the OSHA inspection.

OSHA has cited Martin Foundry, Co for numerous lead-related violations. A few of the violations include lead overexposure to employees, inadequate lead hazard training, and allowing employees to consume food and drinks in the presence of lead. Martin Foundry, Co had been previously cited for the same violations in 2014.

A simple call to an environmental consultant who specializes in lead exposures could have saved this company over $110,000 in fines and a lot of time spent with OSHA.

Don’t Let Lead Get You Fined. Here’s what you can do as an employer:

  • Call a professional to test for presence of lead and conduct exposure monitoring.
  • Investigate if a substitute material for lead can be used.
  • Determine if engineering controls can reduce your employees’ exposures to lead.
  • Provide proper respiratory protection and personal protective equipment when working in the presence of lead or lead dust.
  • Train your employees on lead hazards and ways to reduce lead exposure outside the workplace or jobsite.
  • Make sure employees do not eat or drink in areas with possible exposure to lead. Establish a separate break room or eating area.

If you suspect lead in the workplace, act quickly. Contact a professional lead inspector to fully assess the levels of lead exposure.

New Story Originally Posted on www.osha.gov.

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