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Fine of $125,400 Is Proposed by OSHA against Leather Tanning Firm

The Occupational Safety and Health Administration cites the Milwaukee leather tanning and finishing firm D.R. Diedrich and Co. for alleged willful and serious violations of the federal workplace safety standards, said the agency on Tuesday.

The fine proposed by OSHA is a total of $125,400.

OSHA started the inspection of the company at 2615W, Greves St. after it received a notice that a worker who was on the job for about three weeks was got killed when his harness was caught and he was pulled under and between the mixing drum.

According to the Milwaukee police, Billie J. Bell Jr. of Milwaukee was killed in the June 9 accident.

The inspection by OSHA revealed one willful and 21 serious violation of OSHA workplace standards, according to the statement given by the agency.

"The willful violation alleges the employer failed to guard machinery to protect workers who are routinely required to work in areas of unguarded rotating tanning drum mixers. A willful violation is one committed with intentional, knowing or voluntary disregard for the law's requirements, or with plain indifference to employee safety and health," says the statement.

No one at the company was available for the comment.

OSHA had conducted an inspection of the company in 2008 and had issued two serious citations that involved hazard communication and industrial trucks.