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OSHA fines NY fire extinguisher service company after tank explosion

16 September 2016

Two employees of Oprandy's Fire & Safety Equipment were severely injured on February 12, 2016, when a compressed gas cylinder designed for a fire-suppression system exploded while they were attempting to fill it with compressed air from a high-pressure source.

The US Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) found that the company, based in Middletown, New York, failed to train the employees on the procedures needed to fill the cylinder properlyand that the air device's pressure exceeded the cylinder's listed pressure limit.

Additional hazards involved the company failing to:
·  Equip the tank and valve assembly with a pressure relief device.
·  Assess the workplace for hazards requiring the use of personal protective equipment.
·  Require personnel to use personal protective eyewear and footwear.
·  Stack and secure fire extinguishers and compressed gas cylinders properly.
·  Develop, implement and/or maintain a written chemical hazard communication program and provide employees with training on hazardous chemicals.

As a result of these conditions, OSHA cited the company for seven serious violations of workplace safety standards and is proposing penalties of  $19,774.

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