BATESVILLE, Miss. - The U.S. Department of Labor's Occupational Safety and Health Administration is proposing $228,320 in penalties for 34 safety and health violations found at Art Horizons Inc. in Batesville.

In March, OSHA initiated a follow-up to a 2008 inspection at Framed Picture Enterprise Inc. At that time, the agency was informed Framed Picture Enterprise Inc. is now operated as Art Horizons Inc.

As a result of the latest inspection, OSHA has issued the company one willful safety and one willful health citation with a penalty of $126,000. The safety violation relates to the company failing to maintain a workplace free from the accumulation of combustible dust around equipment and overhead conduits. The health violation is associated with failing to annually administer hearing tests and not requiring hearing protection for workers exposed to noise over the baseline level.

In addition, OSHA is proposing $12,400 in penalties for two repeat and two serious health violations; and $89,920 for 16 serious safety, 11 repeat safety and one other-than-serious health violation. The health violations relate to noise hazards, flammable liquids and failing to develop, implement or maintain a written hazard communications program. The safety violations are associated with dust collection systems, fall hazards, blocked exit routes, lack of an eyewash station, lack of machine guarding, inadequate emergency lighting and failing to conduct periodic inspections of the energy control procedures.

"These sizable fines stem from this company's failure to correct specific hazards, as well as allowing other hazards to occur repeatedly," said Clyde Payne, OSHA's area director in Jackson, Miss. "The agency will neither accept nor tolerate employers' repeated failures to correct hazardous conditions."

The company has 15 business days from receipt of the citations and proposed penalties to comply, request a conference with OSHA's area director or contest the findings before the independent Occupational Safety and Health Review Commission. The site was inspected by OSHA's Jackson Area Office, 3780 Interstate 55 N., Suite 210, Jackson, MS 39211; telephone 601-965-4606. To report workplace accidents, fatalities or situations posing imminent danger to workers, call OSHA's toll-free hotline at 800-321-6742.

Under the Occupational Safety and Health Act of 1970, employers are responsible for providing safe and healthful workplaces for their employees. OSHA's role is to assure these conditions for America's working men and women by setting and enforcing standards, and providing training, education and assistance. For more information, visit http://www.osha.gov.


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