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OSHA cites UPS over alleged violations at Sharonville facility

Posted: 1:00 PM, Jan 03, 2019
Updated: 2019-01-03 18:01:01Z
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SHARONVILLE, Ohio — The Occupational Safety and Health Administration has cited UPS over alleged violations at the company's Sharonville distribution center.

OSHA has proposed penalties of $208,603 for UPS after inspectors reported repeatedly finding obstructed exit routes at the Canal Road facility, "putting workers at risk," officials said in a news release.

Equipment was permanently located and attached to a belt conveyor, limited the access route, according to OSHA's citation to UPS. Also, inspectors wrote that management allowed packages to accumulate in aisles, reducing some access routes to just 7 inches.

"Failing to maintain required access routes is a serious hazard that can puts workers' safety at risk, especially in an emergency evacuation situation," OSHA Area Office Director Ken Montgomery said in a news release. "This employer's failure to follow required exit route safety requirements has been cited at other UPS facilities. Maintaining safe, well-marked exit routes must be part of a comprehensive safety and health program at all facilities."

OSHA also cited UPS for stair risers inspectors said weren't uniform in height and unmarked doors that inspectors said could be mistaken for exits.

UPS is contesting the findings, OSHA officials said. In a statement, the company said employee safety is its "first priority" and noted that employees "receive regular training on the company's methods and procedures to safely operate our facilities."

"This includes how to safely exit the workplace in the event of an emergency," the company said. "UPS also maintains regular correspondence with OSHA about the safety of our employees. We are investigating the situation and will take appropriate action."