OSHA News Release - Table of Contents
Trade News Release Banner Image

Region 1 News Release: 09-579-BOS/BOS 2009-160
Thurs., June 11, 2009
Contact: Ted Fitzgerald
Phone: 617-565-2074

U.S. Labor Department's OSHA proposes more than $255,000 in fines against New Hampshire firearms manufacturer for 60 safety and health hazards

CONCORD, N.H. - The U.S. Department of Labor's Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) has proposed $255,150 in fines against Sturm Ruger & Co. Inc. for 60 alleged violations of safety and health standards identified during the agency's inspections of the firearms manufacturer's Newport, N.H., plant conducted between November 2008 and May 2009.

"Our inspections identified a large number of mechanical, respirator protection, electrical, lead, fire, explosive and other hazards that must be effectively and continuously addressed to protect the workers at this plant from potentially deadly or disabling injuries and illnesses now and in the future," said Rosemarie Ohar, OSHA's area director in New Hampshire.

OSHA found that the company failed to guard rotating parts on drill presses, sanding and polishing machines despite its knowledge that employees were exposed to severe or fatal injuries if they came in contact with the rotating parts. As a result, OSHA has issued the company one willful citation with $63,000 in proposed fines. OSHA defines a willful violation as one committed with plain indifference to or intentional disregard for employee safety and health.

Additional safety hazards include the lack of spark detectors or suppression systems to minimize fire and explosion hazards in ventilation systems that collect combustible wood and metal dust; allowing combustible dust to accumulate; unguarded floors and platforms; lack of eyewashes and adequate personal protective equipment; inadequate procedures, equipment and training to lock out machines' power