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Region 9 News Release: 12-919-SAN (SF-90)
May 9, 2012
Contact: Deanne Amaden      Jose A. Carnevali
Phone: 415-625-2630      415-625-2631
Email: amaden.deanne@dol.gov      carnevali.jose@dol.gov

US Labor Department's OSHA cites Guam employer for
safety violations following forklift operator fatality

HONOLULU – The U.S. Department of Labor's Occupational Safety and Health Administration has cited GM Logistics in Guam for five alleged serious and one other-than-serious safety violation following an inspection that was prompted by a Nov. 16, 2011, workplace fatality.

Barrigada-based GM Logistics collects scrap metal for recycling. The fatality occurred while the crew was preparing to transport a 40-foot-long bus from a privately owned lot to the Formosa Recycling Facility in Harmon. The employee had attempted to jump out of a forklift that was tipping over, and was crushed.

"This fatality could have been prevented had the employer ensured that everyone was abiding by OSHA's forklift safety standards," said Galen Lemke, director of OSHA's Honolulu Area Office. "Instead, a family and a community have suffered an irreplaceable loss."

The serious violations involve permitting employees to operate the forklift without using a seat belt; not examining the forklift for defects prior to operation; allowing the operation of the forklift despite obvious and serious defects affecting the accelerator and steering mechanism, as well as leaking steering fluid and unreadable safety information affixed to the equipment. Additionally, the employer was unable to document whether the worker who was killed had received the required forklift operation and safety training. A serious violation occurs when there is substantial probability that death or serious ph