OSHA proposes fines for Fairfield bowling alley where worker die - Cincinnati News, FOX19-WXIX TV

OSHA proposes fines for Fairfield bowling alley where worker died

According to authorities, the victim got caught in the machinery at Northwest Lanes (Photo: FOX19/Brett Hoffland) According to authorities, the victim got caught in the machinery at Northwest Lanes (Photo: FOX19/Brett Hoffland)
David Geiger (back center) (Photo: Facebook) David Geiger (back center) (Photo: Facebook)
BUTLER COUNTY, OH (FOX19) - The U.S. Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) found that the machine's parts at a Fairfield bowling alley were improperly exposed which led to the death of a 53-year-old worker in November.

On Nov. 6, David Geiger died of asphyxiation after his hooded sweatshirt was caught in a piece of machinery while he was doing maintenance work in the back of the alley on a pinsetter at Northwest Lanes on Happy Valley Drive.

[Related: Coroner releases name of victim in Fairfield bowling accident]

Geiger had worked for the bowling alley about four years. 

No one heard or saw the accident, authorities say, but another employee at the bowling alley found Geiger about ten minutes after it happened.

"He was sent back with a problem with one of the lanes," said police spokesman Doug Day. "He went back there and they tried to call him and when he didn't answer the call they went back there and found him. It's not something they have happen very offer so like the other employees it's a small business, so they're all affected."

According to OSHA, Investigators determined that the pinsetters mechanisms at Northwest Lanes lacked adequate guards to prevent employees from hazardous exposure to moving parts. OSHA inspectors found Northwest Lanes lacked a program for preventing unintentional operation of machinery during servings and maintenance including jams, a process known as lockout/tagout. The agency noted that equipment, including pulleys, belts and shafts, lacked guards to prevent workers from coming near operating parts.  Employees were also exposed to energized electrical components.

As a result, OSHA issued eight serious safety violations to the alley's owner. They proposed penalties for $45,500 for the recreational center, which employs 26 workers. 

OSHA says Northwest Lanes has requested an informal conference with OSHA's area director in Cincinnati. The company contested the findings which may go before the independent Occupational Safety and Health Review Commission.

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