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Flowery Branch plant cited by OSHA after March fatality
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A Flowery Branch company has been cited by the federal Occupational Safety and Health Administration with 19 safety and health violations, including one willful, following a March 3 accident that killed an employee.

Adam Wingo, 30, died in the incident at Koswire, a Korean-based manufacturer of wires and cables with a plant on Cantrell Road.

According to OSHA, which falls under the U.S. Department of Labor, the worker became caught in moving wire and was pulled into rotating rolls.

The willful violation involved failing to provide machine guarding to protect operators and other workers from hazards created by ingoing pinch points and rotating parts on equipment throughout the plant, according to an OSHA news release.

A willful violation is one committed "with intentional knowing or voluntary disregard for the law’s requirements, or with plain indifference to worker safety and health," the release states.

"This incident was preventable. Employers cannot allow employees to be exposed to unguarded equipment or other workplace hazards," said Bill Fulcher, director of OSHA’s Atlanta-East Area Office. "It is imperative that management find and eliminate hazards before another worker is killed or injured."

OSHA also reported the company did not provide guarding on pulleys or horizontal and vertical belts.

Other serious violations, which are considered as such when there is a great likelihood of harm or death, include failing to develop specific written procedures for the control of potentially hazardous energy for machines with more than one energy source, ensure that authorized employees receive training to recognize hazardous energy sources, provide an emergency eyewash station at the degreasing tank, perform sling inspections, remove slings that are damaged and worn, ensure chemical splash goggles are used when employees handle corrosive chemicals and properly label drums and tanks containing corrosive materials.

Those citations carry $145,530 in proposed penalties, according to the release. Also, due to the willful violation, OSHA has placed Koswire in its Severe Violator Enforcement Program, which means there will be targeted follow-up inspections to ensure compliance.

A message left at the Flowery Branch office has not been returned.

The company has 15 business days from receipt of the citations to comply, request an informal conference with OSHA’s Atlanta-East area director or contest the citations and penalties before the independent Occupational Safety and Health Review Commission, according to the release.

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