Employers are required by law to provide a safe and healthful workplace for their employees. The Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) is responsible for ensuring employers abide by those regulations.

In November 2011, an employee’s arm was amputated below the elbow by a machine at Bazzini Holdings LLC, a manufacturer of fine chocolate and nut goods, according to The Morning Call.

Consequently, OSHA cited Bazzini Holdings with 15 workplace safety and health violations, including three repeat, eight serious and four other-than-serious violations.

A repeat violation is issued when the employer has been cited for either the same or a similar violation during the last five years. In this case, Bazzini was cited for electrical hazards and uncovered projecting shafts in 2008, but failed to resolve the problems. As a result, it was cited for repeat violations in these areas.

Serious violations are defined as hazards about which the employer knew or should have known where there is a substantial probability that death or serious physical harm could result. Bazzini was cited for numerous serious violations, including its failure both to provide general machine and power transmission guarding and to develop and implement a hazard communication program.

Other-than-serious violations affect job safety and health, but likely would not result in death or serious physical harm. Bazzini Holdings’ citations included having unsecured machinery and deficiencies in its personal protective equipment.

These citations could result in penalties of $56,400 for Bazzini Holdings. The company must respond within 15 business days. It can respond either by paying the fine, asking for an informal conference or disputing the citations and penalties.

Source: U.S. Department of Labor, “U.S. Labor Department’s OSHA Cites Bazzini Holdings for Safety and Health Violations at Allentown, Pa., Facility After Worker’s Arm Amputated,” May 8, 2012.