DANVILLE, Va.—Goodyear is contesting citations handed down by the Virginia Occupational Safety and Health Administration following investigations into the deaths and accidents at the company's Danville plant.
VOSH cited Goodyear for numerous alleged violations at the tire factory and fined the company more than $1 million, it said in a press release issued Oct. 13.
Four fatalities have occurred at the facility from August 2015 to August 2016. The second and third deaths—Charles “Greg” Cooper, 53, and Kevin Waid Edmonds, 54; two comprehensive plant inspections; a non-fatal steam burn accident probe; and a fingertip amputation resulted in the latest citations. Cooper died April 12; Edmonds was killed in an industrial accident on March 31.
A Goodyear spokeswoman said the company filed a Notice of Contest on the most recent citations “as part of a formal process to engage with VOSH on its findings and seek a mutually acceptable resolution.”
Once a case is contested, companies are not required to correct cited violations until the case is either settled or tried in a circuit court for the city or county where the alleged violation took place, according to VOSH, which is part of the Virginia Department of Labor and Industry.
Following the latest safety and health inspections at the factory, VOSH cited four willful, 115 serious and three other serious violations at the Danville site. VOSH levied less than $1.2 million in penalties.
VOSH also hit Goodyear with two willful and two serious violations and fined the tire maker $152,600 in penalties tied to the death of Cooper, an 18-year employee and maintenance mechanic at the facility who was ruled dead after his body was found in a 6-foot, 8-inch pit/sump containing boiling water and oil. Burns and drowning were given as the cause of death.
In addition, VOSH issued one serious violation and a $7,000 penalty for a nonfatal accident that occurred April 25 involving an employee who was burned by steam while attempting to retest a tire curing press with a co-worker.