Shipping company fined $380,000 for health and safety breaches

Shipping company fined $380,000 for health and safety breaches

W8 Shipping LLC faces $379,709 in proposed penalties after the U.S. Department of Labor found the company to have exposed dozens of employees at a Port of Savannah’s warehouse to potentially deadly hazards.

Inspectors with the department’s Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) determined that W8 Shipping LLC wilfully exposed workers to the risk of being struck or crushed by falling vehicles elevated by forklifts during loading and unloading.

The company reportedly failed to provide eye protection to workers changing liquid propane tanks and using nail guns.

OSHA inspectors also cited the company for allowing flammable wood dust to build up on electrical outlets and equipment, floors, and other machinery.

Moreover, inspectors found that W8 Shipping permitted employees to drive powered industrial trucks with obstructed views and without instruction, training, or regular evaluations, and sometimes with unstable loads.

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The company was additionally found to have allowed employees to work on the trailers at heights over 6 feet without fall protection.

OSHA further cited the company for 22 serious violations, one wilful violation and one other-than-serious violation.

“For decades, established safety standards have been in place to protect workers from dangers that W8 Shipping’s employees face and yet the company chose to ignore federal regulations,” explained OSHA acting Area Director, Heather Sanders.

“When it comes to workplace safety, shortcuts are the quickest route to serious injuries or worse,” Sanders added.

READ: ICHCA Webinar: Technology can drive port safety but staff training and buy-in are critical to safe working practices  

The company has 15 business days from receipt of its citations and penalties to comply, request an informal conference with OSHA’s Area Director, or contest the findings before the independent Occupational Safety and Health Review Commission.

In March 2023, AD Ports Group announced that it will implement a Vessel Traffic Management Information System (VTMIS) across its UAE operations.

More recently, the European Commission (EC) presented five legislative proposals to modernise EU rules on maritime safety and prevent water pollution from ships.

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